The brain: a wildly complex and fascinating organ is the subject of interest throughout the world. It is comprised of fat, water, about 100,000 miles of blood vessels, and over 100 billion neurons. It is the control center for our bodies, is capable of countless signals, tasks, and functions without our bodies even recognizing what is happening. With something so totally vital to our being, we should protect and nourish it in order to maximize our potential. One of the ways we can support healthy brain function is by eating specific foods.
There are a few things that are affecting our brain today: Inflammation, toxicity, and low quality food. Let’s discuss some of these topics and learn more about how we can counteract these effects.
In our modern American culture, we work too much, are overstressed, exposed to many environmental agents, poor water and food quality, and overall lead our lives in a state of constant hyperstimulation and inflammation. All of these factors contribute to our total health, including the development of our brain in the womb. You may have feelings of brain fog, balance issues, mood swings, visual blurriness, or maybe your children can’t focus well in school or have difficulty completing tasks. An unhealthy brain does not allow all of us the opportunity to thrive, so we must be mindful of how we are taking care of it. Let’s discuss some particular foods that support the wellbeing of our brain, shall we?
As mentioned earlier, the brain is comprised of a high concentration of fats. Consuming high quality fats such as extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, avocadoes, walnuts, and wild salmon will help contribute to a happy brain. The olive oil at room temperature is full of polyphenols to help slow age related degeneration, which in turn supports memory and cognition. Coconut oil is a wonder-food as it has several wellness properties. It is anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, among other things, and helps to reinforce gut health, allowing the proper gut/brain communication to occur smoothly. Wild salmon is another source of great fats, specifically omega-3 fatty acids. These help with memory and brain fog, and can help your children focus better, too.
Certain herbs and spices such as rosemary and turmeric, can also aid in supporting healthy brain function while adding tons of flavor to meals. Rosemary contains properties that fight against free radicals and neurodegeneration. Therefore, adding rosemary can decrease your chances of Alzheimer’s and dementia. Turmeric is a strong anti-inflammatory herb that has been shown to have fantastic effects on the entire body, not only the brain. Turmeric also has strong antioxidant properties, support the immune system, and aids in the brain’s intake of oxygen.
Chocolate…dark chocolate of high quality is also beneficial for brain health for many reasons. Dark chocolate, ideally around 70% dark or higher, has antioxidant and antinflammatory properties. Not only that, it can help increase blood flow to the brain, helping it function more efficiently. The important thing to remember is that the quality of the dark chocolate is very important, just like all of the ingredients and foods you consume.
For more information and recipes about what foods can help support healthy brain cognition, tune in to my Facebook Live event on Thursday June 22nd at 7pm. I will be diving deeper into healthy foods and showing you fun, creative ways to incorporate these foods into your meals.