Health

Foods to improve your brainpower

Foods to improve your brainpower

What to remember where you left your keys? Including more brain-boosting foods to your diet could be the answer, says accredited nutritionist Caitlin Reid.

The foods you eat can help you to perform at your best — not just physically but mentally too! With stress levels in Australians at the highest levels, anything that can keep us level headed or provide us with the energy to get more down is less time definitely has room on our daily agenda. The good news is these brain-boosting benefits may come simply by adding a couple of foods to our diet. Here are five foods that will improve your brainpower.

1. Blueberries: Add blueberries to your breakfast and your brain will thank you. According to research in animals, blueberries may help protect the brain from the damage caused by free radicals, thereby slowing the brain’s natural aging process, reducing memory loss. According to US research, cells called microglia, which remove and recycle toxic proteins from the nervous system, begin to malfunction as the body ages and that compounds in blueberries may reverse this process. A serve of blueberries each may just help you remember where you left your keys.

2. Salmon: There’s a reason why salmon and other oily fish such as tuna and mackerel are called brain food — they’re rich in brain-friendly omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fats are highly concentrated in the brain and play an important role in brain function. They appear to play an important role in brain memory, learning, performance and behavioural function, while also helping to fight against some mental disorders as depression, mood disorders and depression. Include 2-3 serves of salmon or another oily fish each week, or tablet fish oil supplements.

3. Tea: Tea keeps the mind sharp, with research showing older people who regularly consumed green tea were more discerning than those who didn’t. According to research published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition, drinking 50mg of L-theanine (found in three cups of tea) daily increased alpha-brainwave activity resulting in a relaxed mind without inducing drowsiness. The L-theanine enables us to switch between tasks more effectively. So be sure to enjoy your morning and afternoon cuppa.

4. Eggs: Not only are eggs packed with protein, vitamin B12, iron, vitamin E and selenium they also contains choline. Choline is thought to improve cognitive function and memory at all stages of life while choline deficiency has been linked to poor cognitive function in some people such as the elderly.

5. Milk: Milk will definitely provide you with brainpower, as it contains two brain-boosting amino acids. The first, tryptophan, converts to the feel-good substance serotonin, which regulates memory and leaning, as well as induces a calming effect, helping to induce sleep. The second is tyrosine, which is converted into hormones such as adrenaline, improving our ability to cope under stress. So be sure include milk daily.

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