Part of following a healthy lifestyle involves protecting your brain from problems related to the normal aging process. A recent study conducted by the AARP discussed the range of problems that people may experience, from reduced ability to think clearly to developing dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
A recent article published by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) outlined 8 important nutrients that you should make sure you are including in your diet to protect your brain. Here are the 8 important nutrients:
1. Cocoa Flavanols
Cocoa flavanols are important for maintaining healthy circulation and cardiovascular health. There may also be a correlation to improved memory function. Because it is suspected that cocoa flavanols can help increase the ability of the dentate gyrus in the brain to function effectively, this compound can potentially help reduce age-related memory problems.
2. Phosphatidylserine and Phosphatdic Acid
Two recent preliminary studies revealed that the combination of these compounds can increase memory function and also improve mood. The improved cognitive function is especially evident in elderly individuals.
3. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are well recognized as being helpful to cardiovascular health. Recent studies have shown a correlation to memory improvement, as well. A study conducted on mice showed that those mice who received omega-3 fatty acid supplements showed better spatial memory and localization abilities, improved recall of knowledge, better object recognition, and other factors known to be affected by the aging process. Opt to include foods that contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, such as flaxseed oil, salmon, and chia seeds.
This natural substance is contained within the cells of the body and important contributors to the development of brain tissue. Citiocoline can help to regulate memory and improve cognitive function, by improving the communication between neurones and protecting the brain from damage caused by free radicals. Preliminary studies have shown that this compound can help a person maintain normal brain function during the aging process and supplements may be helpful.
Studies have shown that a diet rich in walnuts can help slow down the advancement of Alzheimer’s disease in mice. Similar studies are now being conducted on humans to validate the results.
Patients who suffer from serious concussions are often recommended to take magnesium supplements because they can help with improving brain function. Foods that contain high levels of magnesium include avocado, bananas, dark chocolate, and soy beans.
Not only does choline help improve liver health and the reproductive health of women, but it can also improve the function of neurotransmitters in the brain. This can help support the brain during the aging process. Eggs contain high levels of choline and are an important part of a brain-healthy diet.
Blueberries contain high amounts of anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. Specifically, the compound known as anthocyanin, is a flavanoid that improves neurocognitive functioning.
When you are thinking about your healthy lifestyle, be sure to not forget about the health of your brain! These foods and nutrients are important for maintaining brain health as you age, and should be part of a healthy diet.