EAT YOUR WAY TO A BET­TER BRAIN

Style Magazine - - Nutrition -

It seems hardly a day goes by with­out be­ing bom­barded with new ad­vice about what to eat, what not to and the next big thing sure to keep us healthy.

Years of nu­tri­tional re­search have re­vealed our choice of foods in­flu­ences our mem­ory, gen­eral cog­ni­tive skills, mood and men­tal well-be­ing.

Get­ting it right is im­por­tant to boost fo­cus and think­ing at all ages.

Brain Fit­ness Doc­tor and au­thor of Fu­ture Brain: The 12 Keys to Cre­ate Your High Per­for­mance Brain, Dr Jenny Brockis shares her tips on eat­ing to im­prove your brain func­tion.

The top con­tenders for boost­ing fo­cus, mem­ory and bet­ter cog­ni­tion are the Mediter­ranean and MIND diet.

Have you con­sid­ered the Mediter­ranean style of eat­ing?

Leafy greens, cold wa­ter oily fish such as salmon or mack­erel or lean pro­tein, deeply pig­mented berries such as blue­ber­ries and straw­ber­ries, some seeds and nuts, some whole grains, a good dol­lop of olive oil, a small glass of red wine and you are good to go.

Be­yond the wa­ters of the Med, the new kid on the di­etary block is the MIND diet.

What’s par­tic­u­larly ex­cit­ing here is that this way of eat­ing that is sim­i­lar to the Mediter­ranean diet has been as­so­ci­ated with a 35% lower risk of Alzheimer’s dis­ease.

It in­cor­po­rates all those foods shown by the re­search to be good for the brain and it’s easy to fol­low.

BRAIN-FRIENDLY FOODS

Go green: Mum was right – six serv­ings a week of leafy green veg­eta­bles such as spinach, kale and Asian and salad greens.

More ve­g­ies: In­clude a wide va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent coloured ve­g­ies on your plate – at least one ev­ery day – cap­sicum, car­rots, egg­plant, squash – your choice. Go nuts: Pre­vi­ously ma­ligned for be­ing guilty of caus­ing weight gain – nuts are packed with good fats and vi­ta­mins. Five serves a week, (that’s five small hand­fuls) is all that’s re­quired. Berry de­light­ful: Two or more serves a week of blue­ber­ries, straw­ber­ries, black­ber­ries or cher­ries to pack a pow­er­ful anti-ox­i­dant punch. Beans: Len­tils, chick­peas, kid­ney beans or baked beans – three times a week. Whole grains: For those not al­ler­gic or celiac, three serv­ings a day. Go fish: Nat­u­rally, fish would have to be in­cluded for the omega-3 con­tent – once a week. Too easy! Meat: Eat chicken or turkey twice a week. Olive oil: Ex­tra vir­gin for your sal­ads and cook­ing. Wine: One glass a day (that’s 125ml).

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