March 29, 2012
I don’t tell too many people, but both of my parents have dementia, and my mom has had Alzheimer’s disease for several years. It is definitely tough stuff to deal with, and that is why I don’t talk about it publicly. However, when I come across new information on this topic, it always catches my eye. So, I thought I would share…A new study, from the Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, found that people in their late 80s with higher blood levels of B-complex vitamins, vitamins C, D and E, as well as the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, showed less mental impairment and brain shrinkage typical of Alzheimer’s disease.
What you don’t eat matters, too. A recent Mayo Clinic study found that simply limiting food intake to fewer than 2,150 calories a day was linked to better brain health.
Here are 6 foods that are said to help with mental dexterity:
1. Beans- Beans and green peas provide a rich dietary source of B-complex vitamins (plus, they provide plenty of protein and fiber).
2. Citrus- Oranges and orange juice are a convenient and inexpensive source of ascorbic acid (aka vitamin C), as are tangerines, limes, lemons and other citrus fruits.
3. Almonds- Vitamin E occurs naturally in almonds, other nuts and avocados, and studies have shown that people with the highest blood levels of Vitamin E have a reduced risk of developing Alzheimer’s.
4 Fish- Polyunsaturated “healthy fats”, like those found in salmon, herring, and mackerel, reduce inflammation in the body and seem to help the heart function.
5. Spinach- Popeye’s favorite snack is rich in vitamins A and K, folic acid and iron, plus it’s versatile: It can be eaten raw in salads, baked, steamed or stir-fried.
6. Coffee- Amazingly, a study found that caffeinated coffee decreased blood levels of a plaque-forming protein and even reduced Alzheimer’s-like cognitive impairment.
7. Coconut oil- New studies are looking into whether or not coconut oil is helpful for brain aging and to help Alzheimer’s disease. More research is being done on this topic, but so far, so good.
See AARP for more information on this study.
Coffee photo above from Pinterest
17 Responses to “7 Foods for a Healthy Brain”
Hey! I eat four of those 7 things on a regular basis. Now I just need to add more beans, fish and coconut oil to my diet. I love these posts! They're so informative and inspirational.
I've been hearing about coconut oil too recently and I hope that the research in this area continues as my family has been affected as well so it's a topic that's close to home for me.
Great Post! It's important to eat healthy to stay healthy. Everyone should include these amazing brain foods in their diet.
happen to love coconut oil and have for some time now. These are excellent tips. Thanks Alison
Sanjeeta kk says:
Good to read that coconut oil is also in the list!
Kulsum at JourneyKitchen says:
Thanks for yet another informative post!
Great post Alison! thanks for sharing!
Bev Weidner says:
It's a good thing I love every single thing you just listed. YEAH!
Must be super tough. I ;babysat' my friend's mom who's got Alzheimer's for half a day once and saw it first hand. The loss of language. Paranoia as they don't recognize you and think why am I in the car with a stranger?! Your suggestions here are excellent!
Great tips Alison. My parents are both getting up in years and I help take care of them. I worry about brain health a lot (for us too). Glad to see they are doing some of the right stuff. :)
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com says:
Great tips Alison! I just finished reading a book titled, "Brain Food" and it carries similar tones to your tips. I am happy you are there for your parents. They are so proud of you :) xoxo
Averie @ Averie Cooks says:
Glad that coffee made the list! And very cool you changed your comment field to hyperlink folks' sites :)
Great post! So sorry about your parents. You do so many things with the sorrow in your life. It's truly amazing
So helpful! I love AARP magazine! Great post as always. You are a constant inspiration every single day
Thanks Kiran! I need to get that book ASAP
Thanks for this list! I need to find some coconut oil!
Thanks for this informative post - the more we all learn, hopefully, the more mindful we will be of what we eat and what we feed our families.