Our food choices affect our heart, liver and other body parts, including our brain. A healthy diet can improve brain performance and preserve brain function, so you must consume healthy fats like nuts, fatty fish, lots of fruits and vegetables, and very low amounts of processed and sugary foods. Eating high-fibre whole grains and legumes is also crucial for brain power.
The following guide will highlight how various nutrients affect our brains:
Many people do not realize that up to 70 percent of our brains are made of fat, so it’s vital for proper brain function, although it must be the right kind of fat. You need to get enough omega 3-fatty acids as these are the building blocks of our brain and are also necessary for learning and memory. Fatty fish like salmon and sardines are a great source of omega-three, as are flaxseeds, chia and walnuts.
The type of fat you should avoid in large amounts is saturated fat like butter, fatty meat, and coconut oil because while we need some, too much is unhealthy. The worst kind of fats are partially hydrogenated fats like trans fats, and you should do your best to avoid food that is deep fried as these fats will oxidize over time which can damage our cells.
Eggs, fish, poultry, legumes and nuts are the healthiest sources of protein which are very important building blocks for the neurotransmitters that send messages throughout the brain. Eggs are also a rich source of choline, which is essential for brain function and women during pregnancy. Choline can also be found in peanuts, beans, spinach and cauliflower.
These starches and sugars supply most of the fuel to our body, including the brain. You need to focus on the type and quality of carbohydrates you eat, as this will make a big difference. Complex carbs are ideal as they are high in fibre so consume beans, fruits and vegetables. These foods contain vitamins, antioxidants and minerals that help your body function optimally. These nutrients will fuel your brain and protect brain cells against damage from free radicals released from pollution and stress. Additionally, complex carbs take longer to digest, providing a better source of brain fuel when compared to simple carbs like candy and sweetened drinks.
Healthy carbs also contain lots of fibre, which feeds the good gut bacteria and plays a role in brain function.
It’s never too late to start a healthy diet, and UpMeals can help keep you on track. We provide healthy prepared meals and do all the work for you to enjoy delicious meals and live your best life. We make healthy eating fun and convenient, and our meal kits can be customized based on your preferences. If you are interested in food delivery services in Canada, you can input your postal code for meal delivery to your specific location. View our weekly menu to find out more!