Do you remember your mother giving you overnight soaked almonds? Or insist you have green leafy vegetables in your diet to boost brain health? You must have heard from your parents or relatives that eating certain foods boost brain health.
Do you know that the foods you eat impact your brain health? Most importantly, what you eat can negatively affect the most complex organ in your body, like your brain! Surprisingly, the food you eat affects the nerves, the primary brain cells. In the brain, unhealthy foods rich in fats and sugars cause inflammation of the neurons and prevent the formation of new neurons. This can affect the way the brain works and contribute to brain disorders such as depression. On the other hand, foods that contain healthy nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids, are beneficial for brain health. Such diets improve the formation of neurons and lead to improved thinking, attention, and memory. In short, healthy eating makes the mind happy, so we should all pay attention to what we eat.
Like everyone else, you may have wondered, ‘Why do my parents encourage me to eat fruits and vegetables and to abstain from junk food?’ The answer is, “You are what you eat!” What we eat can determine the structure and functions of our cells. Healthy foods with the proper nutrients should be consumed regularly to keep our brain healthy.
In this blog article, we will discuss how healthy foods boost your brain health and have a list of the five best foods to boost brain health.
How do healthy foods boost your brain health?
There is a direct relationship between the food we eat and the functioning of our brains. Proper, healthy eating can benefit the brain in several beneficial ways. A healthy diet can increase the production of new neurons, a neurogenesis process. It is the process by which new neurons are formed in the brain. What we eat can also affect synaptic plasticity. The brain’s ability to connect between neurons becomes stronger or weaker over time. Synaptic plasticity is simply a measure of the number of connections between neurons. Where communication between neurons is where they can communicate better, and we can better read, think, and memorize.
The hippocampus is one of the most critical structures in the brain. It helps control memory and neurogenesis. Neurons, including the hippocampus, produce and use many molecules to send and receive messages. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a protein that promotes the growth and survival of neurons. Is one such molecule. BDNF can protect neurons from death, increase neurogenesis, and improve our cognitive abilities. A healthy diet can increase BDNF levels and promote neurogenesis in the hippocampus. This increased neurogenesis in the hippocampus can enhance our learning, memory, emotions, attention, and mental health. This is how healthy foods boost your brain health.
Here is a list of the five best food for boost brain health-
1. Omega-3 fats are derived from fatty fish
Omega-3 fats help to improve and repair brain cells. At the same time, antioxidants reduce cell damage and inflammation, both associated with aging of the brain and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease,” Pradhan said. More than half of the brain is made up of fat, and 50% of brain fat contains omega-3 fatty acids. Fish such as salmon, tuna, and sardines are rich in them and are the best food for boost brain health.
2. Berries and eggs which are deep-colored
Deep-colored berries like blueberries have anti-inflammatory properties. They are also rich in antioxidants, which work against oxidative stress and inflammation, conditions that promote neurodegenerative diseases. Berries help improve memory and specific cognitive processes. Eggs contain choline which helps control your mood and memory, vitamins B6 and B12, which help slow down depression and stress, and folate, which helps with fatigue, depression and irritability.
3. Turmeric and pumpkin seeds
Turmeric is known to have properties that can help improve the memory of Alzheimer’s patients. It also boosts serotonin and dopamine, which help to reduce symptoms of depression. Pumpkin seeds are rich in magnesium for reading and memory, zinc essential for sensory processing, copper that helps regulate nerve signaling, and iron that works against brain fog and dysfunction.
Walnuts have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This helps combat the aging process, minor mental disorders, dementia, and many other age-related diseases. Walnuts are rich in alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid-based plant that helps reduce oxidative stress by reducing free radical levels and strengthening antioxidant defenses, thereby reducing oxidative damage to lipids and proteins.
5. Vitamin C
Certain fruits and vegetables such as oranges, hot peppers, guavas, kiwis, tomatoes, and strawberries contain high amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps prevent brain cells from being damaged and supports overall brain health. Studies have shown that vitamin C can prevent Alzheimer’s. Overall, a person can improve his brain function by avoiding overeating or eating too little, getting enough sleep, and staying hydrated. Vitamin c rich foods boost your brain health.
Foods to avoid to boost brain health
When it comes to brain health, knowing what foods to avoid is as important as knowing what foods to eat! A poor diet may be unhealthy for your body and mind. For example, overeating sugar can affect brain memory and learning activities. Soda, which contains a lot of sugar, and even dietary soda, which has sweet ingredients, is not suitable for the brain. Synthetic sweetener, aspartame, in soda can make you irritated or anxious and can cause sleep disturbances.
The brain performs many essential functions, including regulating our mental health and physical well-being. Therefore, we must work hard to keep it healthy! As a result, we must be careful when choosing what we eat since our diet can profoundly affect brain health. We should eat foods rich in healthy nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids. Healthy eating can improve our mental performance, such as our ability to concentrate, remember, read, and think. We should also try to avoid or reduce foods high in fat or sugar, which, if taken in high doses, can lead to inflammation, neurogenesis, and
impaired brain function. Figure 3 can help guide you in your food decisions. Healthy eating will help your brain function better, and this will help you to learn better in school, remember things more efficiently, and avoid rapid mood swings. In conclusion, please pay close attention to what you eat, as your food can make or break your body when it comes to your brain health.