5 Tips For Improving Brain Health In 2018

Weight loss and muscle gain are often on the minds of most people. But don't forget brain health in the pursuit of a healthier you.

Food significantly impacts overall health--mental and physical. The body and brain are a machine. What goes in is what you get out. You don't put diesel in an unleaded tank. For strong focus, memory, mental agility and stress management look to diet. Eating well-balanced meals filled with nutritious foods improves brain function and health over the long term. 

Here are a few foods that specifically target brain health to help you get and stay mentally fit throughout the year.

Eat Healthy Nuts

Nuts are not just delicious and a good way to get protein and fiber (essential to overall health and now scientifically linked to better health and longer life), they also help repair brain cells, contain Vitamin E which may prevent cognitive decline, and provide healthy fats which can make the nerves in the brain stronger. Try raw almonds from Fat Uncle Farms or mixed nuts from Brooklyn Whatever or incredible nut butters. 

Consume Whole Grains

Refined foods such as grains and sugars are sources of inflammation and don't provide brain health nutrients. It is recommended to eat whole grains instead which provide complex carbohydrates which have an array of health benefits. Eating whole grains is linked to improved memory. Ancient grains in particular that have not been processed by hybridization and genetic modification are an important source of nutrients. 

Eat Less Fried Food

Many people have heard of Omega 3 fatty acids which are good for health. Omega 3 plays a role in reducing inflammation. It's counterpart, Omega 6 helps to induce healthy inflammation to heal the body. It's important to keep these two in balance. Some dietitians suggest a one to one ratio. The standard American diet creates an O6 to O3 imbalance of 20 to one which comes primarily from fried foods. This means that many people are in a constant state of inflammation which may impact mood, focus and mental clarity. By eating better and cooking at home, you can bring the O6 to O3 ratio back into balance and feel happier. 

Eat More Mood Boosting Cashews 

Studies have shown that cashews can affect your mood in a positive way. Eating a couple handfuls of this delicious nut can actually make you feel happy, reduce stressful feelings, and produce calmness. The reason cashews can lift your spirits is that they are loaded with tryptophan, an amino acid that help the brain product serotonin which makes you feel good. nuts + nuts makes incredibly tasty roasted cashews sourced from local Indonesian farms. 

Add Probiotic Food To Your Diet

Bad gut health has been linked to everything from bad digestion, lowered immunity, mood swings, and depression. Maintaining a healthy microbiome prevents all of that. It doesn't necessarily mean just eating tons of sauerkraut is going to change your life, but eating fermented foods and getting all those beneficial probiotics along with a balanced diet is a good step to a healthier brain everyday.

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by Spiro Zefferys
Certificate in Plant Based Nutrition