We all find ourselves in a mental fog at times — our mind wanders, we forget someone’s name or where we put our keys, our mood seems low and we just don’t feel on our game. As consumers, we’re constantly flooded with new products designed to combat the effects of stress, keep our minds sharp, recapture our youth or even prevent brain aging. But research labs around the world are pointing out that the secret to brain health is simple, inexpensive and easy to access: nutrient-dense foods.
Food not only fuels our body, it fuels our mind. What we eat affects our thinking patterns, motivation, even memory. But how do we decide which foods will best keep our grey matter vital? And how do we more easily slide those brain foods into our diet for the best possible impact on our mind and body?
The single most important factor in creating a brain-healthy diet is carefully selecting what we eat. While foods like refined sugars lead to cellular inflammation in the brain, reducing blood flow, super-foods will do just the opposite, making the brain healthier than ever.
Add in the apples.
New evidence by researchers in neurobiology is breathing extra life into the adage “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” There’s evidence that as little as four ounces of apple juice twice daily may improve memory and mood instability associated with the aging brain.
Binge on blueberries.
Blueberries have been given the nickname brain-berries for good reason; these powerful antioxidants top the list when it comes to keeping our mind sharp by counteracting the atoms that damage brain cells. There’s good evidence that blueberries improve short-term memory, delaying the effects of aging.
Opt for raspberries.
The power of raspberries is undeniable — their compounds protect brain cells from damaging free radicals. Still not convinced? Recent science has pointed out that berries prevent inflammation in the brain, improving the communication signals that support mental activity and motor control.
Wow with walnuts.
Walnuts are the supreme super-food; not only are they packed with vitamin E, they contain the fatty acids needed for brain cell development and work magic on your memory. Serious mental health issues like depression and Alzheimer’s disease have been linked with low levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
Bring on bananas.
The high levels of tryptophan in bananas give the brain’s serotonin levels a boost, stabilizing mood levels and enhancing mental clarity. Bananas also provide a slow energy release, keeping oxygen levels stabilized and the mind alert.
Add these super-foods together and you’ll be taking a step toward boosting your brain health for the long-term.
Brain Booster Smoothie Recipe:
Start by combining the following in your Vitamix or blender:
1 cup fresh-pressed apple juice
1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries
1/2 cup fresh raspberries
1/4 cup of soaked raw walnuts
1 ripe banana
Blend until smooth.