The Best Diets For Cognitive Fitness

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The Best Diets For Cognitive Fitness – We have known for decades that our food and drink choices affect our heart, liver and other parts of the body. Now we see that the same is true of the brain.

A growing body of research shows that a healthy diet improves brain function and maintains brain function. It makes sense—we know that dietary choices affect blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol. When any of these levels are off, it damages the brain and increases the risk of stroke, dementia, and cognitive impairment.

The Best Diets For Cognitive Fitness

Many people ask if there are any special foods or foods they should eat to get more brain power. It’s hard to say exactly which diet is best for the brain, but we now talk about the Mediterranean diet, DASH (Dietary Approaches to Prevent Hypertension), and MIND (Mediterranean DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay). Research has some clues.

The Mind Diet: A Scientific Approach To Enhancing Brain Function And Helping Prevent Alzheimer’s And Dementia (mind Diet Books): Moon, Maggie: 9781612436074: Books

All these foods have in common: healthy fats like nuts and oily fish, limited consumption of saturated fats like butter and coconut oil, lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains and high fiber, and very few processed and sugary foods like Such as fast food, crisps, cakes and sweet drinks.

Well, no joke about “fat”. Did you know that 70% of our brain is made up of fat? Fat is essential for brain function, but it has to be the right kind of fat. We need to get enough omega-3 fatty acids because they are essential building blocks for our brain and are important for learning and memory. That’s one reason women’s prenatal vitamins contain DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), a type of omega-3 also found in fatty fish like salmon and sardines. Another type of omega-3 can be obtained from plants such as flaxseed, chia and walnuts.

The fats you want to avoid in large amounts are saturated fats such as butter, fatty meats, full-fat dairy products, and coconut oil. We should, but most Americans eat too much.

The worst fats are partially hydrogenated fats, such as trans fats, which are still found in some foods. Also try to avoid mono and diglycerides. These fats replace trans fats in commercial cake mixes, frostings, and other foods. It’s also a good idea to avoid deep-fried foods because these fats oxidize over time and can damage our cells.

Which Foods Might Stop Your Brain From Shrinking?

Proteins are important building blocks for neurotransmitters that send messages throughout the brain. Most research so far points to fish, poultry, eggs and plant-based proteins such as beans and nuts as healthy sources.

Eggs get a bad rap because of their cholesterol content, but recent research shows that eggs are good for most people. In fact, eggs are a rich source of choline, which is important for brain function and is especially important during pregnancy. You can also find choline in peanuts, beans, kale, and spinach.

Carbohydrates are starches and sugars that provide most of the fuel for our body, including our brain. The type and quality of carbohydrates eaten is very important. Focus on complex carbohydrates, meaning those that are naturally high in fiber — think 100 percent whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables. They are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. These nutrients not only nourish the brain, but also protect brain cells from damage from free radicals released by pollution, stress, and a sedentary lifestyle. Complex carbohydrates take longer to digest, so they are a more stable source of fuel for the brain than simple carbohydrates like candy, cookies, and sugary drinks.

Another note about carbohydrates – healthy ones have more fiber. Fiber feeds beneficial gut bacteria, which also play a role in brain function. There is a lot of new research on the gut-brain connection and how our microbiome affects our “second brain” in the gut.

Foods To Improve Brain Health

Reaping the mental health benefits of healthy eating is a lot like training for a marathon. A day or two of healthy eating doesn’t make up for weeks of poor choices. Benefits come with time, and it’s never too late to start.

You have to remember that it’s not just about eating one or two superfoods to boost your brain. It’s the whole package. The most important thing to look at is your “dietary pattern” – the amount of food you eat most of the time. Do you eat fast food four or five times a week? Do you often eat fruits and vegetables? Do you cook at home but use processed mixes? Here are some questions you should ask yourself as you evaluate how you currently eat and what you can change for better brain health.

Visit Ohio State Health and Discovery for more stories from Ohio State experts on health, wellness, innovation, research and science. In addition to leafy greens, the MIND diet (as with any healthy eating plan) encourages eating vegetables every day. Rawpixel/Getty Images/iStockphoto

While some memory loss is normal as you age (that shiny spot where you put your keys, that word on the tip of your tongue that you can’t get back), acute memory loss is not. given You can keep your mind sharp and reduce your risk of serious memory impairment by focusing on what you eat. Your diet, along with some other lifestyle factors, can affect how your brain works and improve your cognitive thinking skills, such as your ability to learn new things, understand important details, solve problems, and complete complex tasks. , and to think seriously.

Most Surprising Healthy Brain Foods

It’s not necessary—or even a good idea—to wait for signs that your memory is failing before you start addressing your brain health. You can improve your brain by eating like your memory and thinking depend on it – because it does.

Studies show that older adults who follow the Mediterranean diet, or a similar diet known as the MIND diet, perform significantly better on cognitive tests than those who follow a less healthy diet. The MIND diet is a cross between the Mediterranean diet and another healthy eating plan known as the DASH diet, which was originally designed to lower high blood pressure. Protecting your heart and blood vessels has also been shown to be good for your brain, so the Brain Diet combines the principles of these two plans with some specific tips to keep your mind healthy.

In addition to the memory impairments that can be associated with aging, studies have linked this eating pattern to a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease, and interestingly, even people who don’t strictly follow the MIND diet have shown benefits. . In the study, those who consistently followed the plan experienced a 35 percent lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease (compared to a 53 percent reduction in risk among those who followed the diet closely). Another study of the MIND diet found that compared to people who did not follow the diet, those who followed the diet had cognitive abilities 7 1/2 years younger, which is a significant benefit.

A separate study also links a healthy diet, along with other lifestyle habits, to improved brain function. The study looked at people between the ages of 60 and 77 who were at risk of dementia and other forms of cognitive decline, as indicated by the fact that they were earlier than expected for their age in these assessments. The comparison worked very badly. Researchers found that after two years of lifestyle changes that included a healthy eating plan, physical activity, participation in thought-stimulating brain exercises, and neurological health monitoring through blood tests and other measures, those on the plan participated earned 25 percent more points. In tests that assess mental performance. Executive functioning scores improved even more; People in the lifestyle intervention group scored 83 percent higher, indicating a better ability to organize information and focus on tasks—in other words, get things done! Processing speed also increased significantly, with a 150 percent higher score in the healthy lifestyle group. Processing speed depends on how quickly you receive and respond to information, so a high processing speed can help you make quick decisions or make it easier to read or take notes.

Best Foods To Eat On The Mediterranean Diet For Brain Health, Weight Loss And Heart Health

To keep your mind sharp, fill up on these staples of the MIND diet.

These healthy vegetables provide important brain-protecting substances such as folate, phylloquinone and lutein. In a study that measured green vegetable consumption among adults aged 99 and older over an average of 4 1/2 years, researchers found that eating just one serving of green vegetables per day helped maintain brain power. The group that achieved this goal had the memory and thinking of people as young as 11 years old! There are many easy ways to incorporate these foods into your diet. You can eat a small side salad for dinner, add some kale to a protein shake,

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