The aging process is full of changes, including memory loss. During normal aging, our brains gradually lose the ability to send signals throughout the body, causing forgetfulness, confusion or difficulty concentrating. Even though you can’t turn back the clock, you can help combat memory loss by incorporating brain-boosting foods that repair and replenish brain cells in your diet.
The Best Foods for Brain HealthBrain-boosting foods contain a wealth of nutrients. Vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids and fiber both heal damaged cells and promote the growth of new brain cells. Let’s take a look at the foods that improve memory and concentration:
Spinach, broccoli, kale, celery, carrots, peppers: The brain craves the fiber and vitamins found in vegetables. One cup of broccoli delivers the daily amount of vitamin K your body needs to boost memory and focus.
Avocados, blueberries, strawberries, acai, oranges, tomatoes, red grapes: While every fruit on this list contains detoxifying vitamins that battle free radicals (which cause damage in the brain), the real stars are avocados and blueberries. Avocados deliver concentrated amounts of vitamins B, C and K. Blueberries aid brain cell production in the part of your brain responsible for memory.
Raisins, apricots, prunes, dates: With less moisture, dried fruits contain less vitamin C than their fresh counterparts, but pack a bigger punch in terms of fiber, potassium and copper. The concentrated levels of nutrients in dried fruit helps heal damaged brain cells.
Eggs are chock-full of B vitamins whose antioxidant properties slow the progression of mental decline.
Wild rice, barley, corn, oats, quinoa, rye, wheat: The fiber in whole grains combats not only inflammation in the brain, but also oxidative stress (caused by free radicals) and vascular damage.
Salmon, mackerel, tuna, trout: The omega-3 fatty acids in fish, particularly in salmon, aid the transmitting function of neurons, improving the brain’s ability to process information quickly. Your body doesn’t produce omega-3 fatty acids on its own, so, for maximum benefit, eat 2 servings of fish per week.
Nuts and seeds
Pumpkin seeds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, chia, flax, almonds: Pumpkin seeds contain a wealth of nutrients like magnesium, iron, zinc and copper that improve nerve signals, aid memory and may even help with relaxation.
Chocolate - the kind with at least 70 percent cocoa - reduces inflammation, boosts mood and contains flavonoids that help memory.
Turmeric, rosemary, sage, thyme: Some call turmeric a wonder food for the brain as it helps new brain cells grow and reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Coffee and tea
Not only does the caffeine in coffee and tea keep you alert, but antioxidants repair free radicals, sharpening concentration.
Add Memory-Boosting Foods to Your DietIt’s simple to incorporate some of the best food for memory into your daily diet. Toss a few walnuts and blueberries onto a kale salad. Sprinkle turmeric on your grilled salmon. Add a side of broccoli to your meal. Add sliced avocado to whole grain toast. Snack on a few roasted pumpkin seeds and some dark chocolate during a morning coffee break.
While you’re making so many smart changes to your diet, don’t forget to incorporate other positive actions to keep yourself sharp. Drink lots of water, get regular sleep, incorporate a little exercise and play brain puzzles. You’ll be amazed at the improvement in your memory.