Brain Food You Actually Need
The brain controls everything the body does, and a healthy diet is a foundation of brain health. The main ingredients for a brain-healthy diet include fruits and vegetables, Omega-3’s, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, protein, and lots of water. We've created a guide below with recommendations on how to eat the right foods that support your brain and help keep it performing at its best.
#1 - The Right Kind of Fat For Your Brain
Your brain is only two percent of your body weight but is composed of 60 percent fat. This is why it is essential to have a diet full of healthy fats and to avoid fats that are unhealthy for the brain. Having lots of omega-3s and healthy oils in your diet will help you achieve this.
#2 - Fuel Your Brain with Fruits and Veggies
A diet full of fruits and vegetables will contain lots of nutrients that are essential to brain health. Berries are at the top of the list of fruit to boost the brain and veggies from the cabbage family top the list of vegetables! Kale and spinach also benefit the brain, and kale is a source Omega-3s.
#3 - Why You Should Eat Seafood and Limit Red Meat
Seafood, like salmon, is full of omega-3 fatty acids and should be consumed at least twice a week if you follow the Mediterranean diet. While following the Mediterranean diet, red meat should only be consumed about once weekly and most protein should come from skinless chicken, turkey, fish, beans, nuts, and other plants.
#4 - Breakfast is the Most Important Meal
Eating a healthy breakfast fuels up your brain for the day. An ideal breakfast meal will include protein and fiber to help keep you full throughout the morning. Avoid breakfast foods like sugary cereal by only keeping the healthiest breakfast groceries in the house.
#5 - Drink Lots of Water
Drinking water is one of the simplest things we can do for our bodies but often neglect. Water supports healthy brain cells, improves concentration, helps maintain memory function, and improves blood flow and oxygen to the brain. Aim to drink eight to twelve eight-ounce glasses of water per day as a guideline. Drinking tea can also help you drink the amount of water you need and provides brain health support.
#6 - Minimize Eating Out
When you cook at home, you have control over the nutritional content. Research suggests eating at a restaurant or eating fast food can have a negative impact on brain health. This is because fried food found at these restaurants is usually high in saturated fat and salt. Prepare most of your meals yourself and grill during the summertime. Cooking helps to keep your mind active and learning new cooking skills is good for brain health. If you must eat out, drinks lots of water before and if it sounds unhealthy, it probably is!