What’s Best to Eat for Brain Health?
The brain is one of the most important organs we have. It does everything for us – from controlling thought, emotion, and motor skills to regulating every process within our body. The brain even controls involuntary components, such as breathing. Our brain works 24/7 for us and therefore requires a constantly supply of fuel, or food. The food that we eat should be good quality and promote good brain health.
Today, we’ll discuss foods to eat to optimize your brain health. Then, we’ll focus on how Pure Plates can have a role in providing brain healthy options through our meal prep delivery service.
Functions of the brain
Before we go into foods to eat to promote brain health, we’ll first dive into some of the main functions of the brain. The brain does many things for our body, we’ve included a list of just some of the functions of the brain below:
- Thought and decision making
- Memories and emotions
- Heart rate
- Temperature control
While the brain is a complex organ, and therefore many aspects of it are unknown, we do know that what we eat impacts our brain health.
Foods to eat: fatty fish
Fatty fish is one of the top foods to consume to promote brain health. Fatty fish includes salmon, tuna, trout, and sardines. The reason why fatty fish is so important to consume is that they are composed of omega-3 fatty acids. About 60% of our brain is made of fat, and almost half of this fat is composed of omega-3 fatty acids. Our brain uses omega-3 fatty acids to build brain and nerve cells, helping to rejuvenate the organ. Fatty fish has also been shown to
Reduce risk of Alzheimer’s or dementia’s disease. Lastly, not getting enough omega-3 in your diet has been linked to negative mental health, such as depression.
One should aim for at least 2 servings of fatty fish per week. Pure Plates can help to up omega-3s intake in your diet by providing healthy meals straight to your door. Some of our favorites right now are Pan Seared Salmon with Pesto and our Salmon Fillet.
Foods to eat: berries
Berries provide many health benefits for our brain because of their antioxidant levels. Berries deliver anthocyanins which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidants effects. Antioxidants are important, especially in the brain, because they reduce inflammation and oxidative stress. By reducing these, aging of the brain and neurodegenerative diseases goes down. Antioxidants can also help improve communication between cells within the brain. Lastly, some studies show that antioxidant consumption through berries can improve memory and other cognitive processes in adults.
We’re loving this Greek yogurt and berries bowl and banana berry bomb bar.
Foods to eat: turmeric
You’ve probably heard about turmeric before. It’s become a trendy food recently because of its anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric is a deep yellow spice that is key in making curry powder. It’s filled with curcumin, an antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties. The antioxidant properties of turmeric as a whole may help to benefit memory, reduce risk of depression, and rejuvenate brain cells.
Before reaching for turmeric as a stand-alone supplement, speak with your healthcare provider to determine if this is the best fit for you.
Foods to eat: broccoli
Broccoli is another food that is packed with antioxidants. You probably get the point by now, but antioxidants are crucial for brain health because it helps to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress. Broccolis also packed with vitamin K. Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin that is important for forming sphingolipids, a type of fat located in the brain. This therefore shows that vitamin K is important for overall brain structure and functionality. High vitamin K has also been shown to improve memory and cognitive status among adults.
Pure Plates provides broccoli in many different forms. You can also get it as a side here to maximize your broccoli intake so you can boost your brain health through our healthy prepared meals.
Foods to eat: seeds and nuts
Seeds and nuts are another food that contain antioxidants. They also contain great sources of important nutrients like zinc, copper, and iron. All of these foods are crucial for brain functionality. Zinc, for example, is necessary for nerve signaling. A deficiency may lead to certain conditions such as depression or Parkinson’s. Our No Crap Nut Bar is one of our favorites when it comes to nuts and seeds.
Foods to eat: oranges
When we think of oranges, we think of vitamin C. Research shows that vitamin C is an important nutrient to prevent cognitive decline. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that fights off free radicals that damage brain cells. Therefore, vitamin C supports brain health as we age so we can live a long, healthy life.
Foods to eat: eggs
Eggs are a great source of many amazing brain-healthy nutrients such as vitamins B6, B12, folate, and choline. Choline helps with communication between the brain to regulate mood and memory. Eggs are a great way to make sure you’re getting in enough choline. The B vitamins in eggs have also been shown to contribute to brain health and reduce decline. Eggs are such a versatile food item that we recommend consuming them (if able) daily! Pure Plates offers many egg options for you to make your healthy eating easier. Some of our favorites are:
The bottom line
There are many foods that can positively impact your brain health. As you can see, there are quite a variety of options. We therefore recommend consuming a well-balanced and varied diet from Pure Plates to ensure that you’re optimizing your brain health today. To stay up to date on the newest items with Pure Plates, check out our rotating menu here.