Did you know that the food you eat impacts how your brain functions? Our gut helps keep our body’s immune responses and inflammation in check and under control. The hormones located in our gut that enter our brains or are produced in our brains influence our cognitive abilities, like how we understand or process new information, the ability to stay focused on the task before us, and signaling to our body that we are full.
Foods rich in antioxidants, good fats, vitamins, and minerals not only provide us with the energy we need to get through the day, they protect us from brain diseases, benefit the gut, and keep our focus and memory sharp. So what foods should you eat to help boost your brain’s focus and memory?
Here’s our list of 10 brain foods to boost focus and memory:
Avocados are loaded with monosaturated fats (the good kind!), contain vitamin K, vitamin B, vitamin C, folate, and the highest protein and lowest sugar amount of any fruit. These nutrients help prevent blood clots in the brain, protect against stroke, improve memory and concentration, and quite frankly, are delicious.
Blueberries are some of the highest antioxidant rich foods known to man. They contain vitamin C, vitamin K, and fiber. Blueberries help protect our brains from degeneration and stress due to their high levels of gallic acid.
Beets are quite the powerful root vegetable. They reduce inflammation, are packed in cancer-protecting antioxidants, and help clear out toxins in your blood. The naturally occurring nitrates in beets boost blood flow to the brain, helping boost mental ability and performance.
Broccoli’s high levels of vitamin K and choline help keep your memory in tip top shape. It also contains high amounts of vitamin C (one cup gives you 150% of the daily recommended intake) and fiber — so you’ll get an immune system boost and a full belly in just one serving!
Celery contains many vitamins, minerals, and nutrients while being an incredibly low calorie food. It’s high levels of antioxidants and polysaccharides are natural anti-inflammatories and help alleviate symptoms of inflammation, allowing your brain to function and its best.
6. Dark Chocolate
The darker the chocolate, the more health benefits it typically contains. Go for chocolate that is at least 70 percent cocoa to get a treat that’s full of flavonols which have both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. They also help lower blood pressure and increase blood flow to the brain and heart — win, win!
Salmon is packed with omega-3 fatty acids which help your brain function smoothly while improving your memory and focus. These same fatty acids also have been linked preventing cancer and killing tumors!
Turmeric is an ancient root that’s been used for healing for thousands of years. Curcumin, a chemical compound found in turmeric, is an incredibly powerful anti-inflammatory agent. Turmeric boosts anti-oxidant levels, keeps your immune system in shape, and improves your brains oxygen intake. This allows you to stay alert and better process information.
Walnuts contain high levels of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that help improve mental alertness. They even contain vitamin E, which has been linked to warding off Alzheimer’s! Grab a handful of nuts and snack to your health!
10. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is an excellent anti-inflammatory food. It helps suppress cells that cause inflammation, aids in preventing memory loss as you grow older, and destroys the bad bacteria that hangs out in your gut and messes with your memory and focus.
Interested in how you can work more of these brain foods into your daily diet? Stay tuned for our follow up blog post with our favorite recipes for each brain food above!