Information on a Healthy Diet
Most folks know that a good information on a healthy diet is always appreciated we also know that a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains keeps us slender and at a reduced risk for heart disease, diabetes, many forms of cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.
But now a growing body of research done to get some good information on a healthy diet shows that this type of diet known as brain food also preserves memory, boosts alertness, and keeps mood bright. And these benefits can extend well into our 80’s and 90’s. So which foods/nutrients appear to be the most responsible for information on a healthy diet guaranteeing a healthy and active mind?
Vitamin C. This potent antioxidant guards against cellular damage from free radicals and is found in citrus fruits, kiwis, mangoes, guavas, tomatoes, spinach, green peppers, strawberries, broccoli, legumes, and potatoes. A daily supplement should be no more than 500 mg.
Vitamin E. Foods rich in this vitamin include almonds, hazelnuts, green leafy vegetables, vegetable oils, sunflower seeds, and whole grains, especially wheat germ. If you choose a supplement, look for mixed tocopherols. Limit intake to 400 IU/day. The brain is particularly susceptible to free radical damage. Working together with vitamin C, these 2 antioxidants taken by subjects in a study at Johns Hopkins University, reduced Alzheimer’s diagnosis by 78 %!
B Vitamins. They play an important role in the synthesis of the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and epinephrine, as well as in preservation of brain function and mental acuity.
Folic acidPlays a crucial role in early brain development, as well as memory, alertness, and focus. Foods rich in this B vitamin include oranges, spinach, and beans. An extra supplement of 400 to 800 mcg isn’t a bad idea.
Vitamin B 12 Contributes to the insulating layer around nerve fibers called the myelin sheath. It is found mainly in meats, poultry and fish. Absorption of this critical vitamin through the digestive tract can decline with age. Some elderly folks have been misdiagnosed with dementia when the real cause of their symptoms was B 12 deficiency due to mal-absorption. (This is readily treatable with monthly injections.)
Vitamin B 6 Helps convert 5-hydroxy-tryptophan (5HTP) into the neurotransmitter serotonin, as well as assisting in the formation of dopamine, 2 powerful mood and alertness brain chemicals. B 6-rich foods include meats, poultry, fish, sunflower seeds, avocados, brown rice, oatmeal, and whole grains. Certain groups are at greater risk of deficiency: alcoholics, the elderly, and women on oral contraceptives. Supplemental intake should not exceed 10 mg/day. A few recent studies have shown a link between declines in memory and Alzheimer’s disease and low levels of folic acid, and vitamins B6 and B 12.
Magnesium.This mineral protects the brain from neurotoxins. Some brain surgeons give it to their patients before and during brain surgery. Good food sources are nuts, seeds, dark green leafy vegetables, and whole grains. Cooking and processing of foods causes them to lose their magnesium. A supplement of 400 mg/day may be advisable.
Chocolate. This is not a misprint! A recent study indicates that eating milk and dark chocolate may boost brain function. Chocolate contains many chemicals that act as brain stimulants, such as caffeine, phenethyamine, and theobromine. Results included improvements in verbal and visual memory, impulse control, and reaction time. Just mind the calories now!
So keep your lights burning brightly in Command Central by making sure the food sources of these important foods and micronutrients are a regular part of your information on a healthy diet on daily basis. If you've been feeling pretty virtuous about minimizing your intake of fast foods and junk/snack foods, now you can feel pretty smart too!