Here Are 7 Foods That Will Significantly Boost Your Brain Power
Have you ever come across people with extraordinary brainpower and be completely blown away? So much that you start questioning the laws of nature itself and wonder how someone, who has the same flesh and bones as you do, could be so gifted. I’ve been there all my life, and I’ve come across Math geniuses and critical thinkers who are so good at solving problems and consuming information like it’s nothing. I would have given anything to be able to memorize course materials and the Lehninger Principles of Biochemistry Textbook, and that is no mean feat.
You might have seen Walter O’Brien and his team of geniuses do some extraordinary critical thinking in the American action drama television series, ‘Scorpion,’ and you start wondering if people like Walter, Toby, and Sylvester really exist. Well, if there’s anything our educational system has taught me in the past couple of years, is that super-geniuses exist!
While we (you and I) are not even close to having that level of brainpower, with the help of the right types of food, we can improve our mental abilities so that we function at our best at all times. Eating food and not just any kind of food, but good and highly nutritious food is essential for you to improve both your physical and mental health.
Even though we need to eat so that our skeletal muscles have enough energy and nutrition for growth and locomotion, the human brain needs a rich and steady supply of nutrients to function optimally, just like any other vital organ in the body. While our everyday diet of junk foods and ‘normal food’ can still feed the brain with nutrients, I’ve discovered that there are special “brain foods” that can boost your mental abilities and cognitive capacity. That’s why in this article, I’ll be sharing with you the best foods that will significantly improve your brainpower.
Why Is Maintaining Brain Health Important?
Before we proceed, it is important to know what a healthy brain means. From the moment a child is formed in the womb to the point of death, the human brain is the chief coordinator of the majority of the body’s functions and works throughout your life helping you understand and interact with the world around you. A healthy brain is beneficial because;
- It enables better functioning and coordination between the organs of your body.
- It reduces the risk of degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.
- It improves your level of concentration and analytical capacity.
- It is capable of forming stable long-term and short-term memories.
Essential Nutrients Required for a Healthy Mind.
Whatever food you choose to eat, it’s important to keep in mind that they contain the following nutrients in the right amounts to improve your brainpower.
- Glucose: The brain cells use glucose (a form of sugar) to fuel cellular activities.
- Zinc: zinc plays an important role in normal brain development and function.
- Vitamin B: helps prevent infection and helps support the production of red blood cells.
- Vitamin C: due to its high antioxidant activities, vitamin c provides great support to the brain.
- Vitamin E: having a similar mechanism with vitamin c, vitamin e provides powerful antioxidants to protect the brain
- Vitamin k: helps to regulate calcium in the brain, therefore, preventing Alzheimer’s.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Omega 3 fatty acids help to build cell membranes throughout the body and in the brain, not to mention that it can make you smarter.
Without further ado, below are 7 brain-boosting foods you should eat more often.
1. Whole Grains.
Every Tv commercial you see keeps yammering about the words Whole grains and how you should consume more of them, but what are whole grains? They are simply grains that have all three componets of their structure intact, and these components include the bran (the nutritious outer layer), the germ (the seed’s nutrient-rich embryo), and the endosperm (the germ’s food supply). Barley, brown rice, buckwheat, millet, oatmeal, and whole wheat, provide a steady supply of energy in the form of glucose to the brain. Because the primary source of energy for the brain is supplied by glucose, your ability to focus and concentrate is totally dependent on the amount of glucose the brain receives. By choosing whole-grain food, you can keep the brain well-stocked with energy. The brain will be able to focus and form stable short and long-term memories better.
The plant nutrient Lycopene has been proven to provide numerous health benefits ranging from improving heart health to protecting the skin from sunburns and certain types of cancers. It’s the pigment that gives tomatoes their characteristic red color. Lycopene found in tomatoes also has antioxidant properties and will help eliminate free radicals in the brain before they can cause any damage. This radical scavenging ability of lycopene keeps diseases like Alzheimer’s at bay. It is advisable to eat at least 22mg per day, but do not consume too much.
I first knew about the extraordinary abilities of Spinach as a kid from the cartoon Popeye the Sailor. Although the leafy green vegetable will not grant you superhuman strength, it is known to contain lots of memory-boosting vitamins and minerals such as vitamins E and K that help in slowing down the onset of cognitive delay. Spinach also helps to speed up information processing and memory recall. This leafy green vegetable is also rich in vitamin C, which researchers believe has the power to increase mental agility.
4. Oily, Fatty Fish.
I bet the first thing that came to your mind is sardines. Well, oily fish such as salmon and sardines have oil in their tissues and belly cavity and could contain up to 30% oil depending on the species. Researchers have proven that Omega-3 fatty acids mostly found in these fish are good for improving brain function. Oily fish like mackerel should be a regular part of your diet if you want a healthy brain.
Do you want to have impressive mental abilities regardless of how old you get? Studies have shown that a higher overall nut consumption can be linked to better brain function in older people. When you consume healthy nuts like almonds and walnuts which are excellent sources of vitamin K, you prevent brain degeneration during old age. Walnuts have rich antioxidant properties and they contain almost twice as many antioxidants as an equivalent amount of any other commonly consumed nut. It won’t be such a bad idea to eat at least seven nuts a day.
Everyone knows that eggs are healthy. They contain a sufficient amount of Vitamin B, which helps to reduce the concentration of homocysteine in the body. Homocysteine is a homolog of the amino acid cysteine, and it’s a common acid in the blood. In high levels, it is linked to mental impairment in the elderly. Eating an egg every day will slow down brain shrinkage when you grow old.
7. Pumpkin Seeds.
The final brain-boosting food on the list is pumpkin seeds. They are known to contain powerful antioxidants that protect the body and brain from free radical damage. The qualitative study of pumpkin seeds shows that they are rich in antioxidants, iron, zinc, magnesium, and many other nutrients. Just a handful of pumpkin seeds will supply the required daily dose of zinc, an element that helps to stabilize and strengthen memory.
So there you have it, the power to transform your mind and boost your mental abilities lie in the food we eat. Like they say, “You Are What You Eat.” Why not choose to eat healthy today. Who knows, you could just wake up tomorrow being as brilliant as Einstein.
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