Foods that boost our brainpower
There is no magic pill to help us stay healthy and prevent our brain from getting old, otherwise known for cognitive decline. However scientists have long established that eating certain foods may help to slow down this decline and therefore they are on the list of foods that boost our brainpower.
Research published in the Harvard Medical School journal shows that the best foods for our brains are the ones that keep our heart and blood vessels also healthy.
Green leafy vegetables
Leafy greens such as kale, spinach, chard, cabbage and broccoli are superfoods that helps us keep our bodies and our brains healthy. They are rich in brain healthy nutrients like vitamin k, lutein, folate and beta carotene. Plant-based foods are considered the best foods we can eat to nourish our bodies and our brains.
The power of walnuts
We often overlook the humble walnut, but walnuts are one of the healthiest nuts we can possibly eat. A 2015 study from UCLA linked eating walnuts to improved cognitive test scores and improved memory. Walnuts are high in omega-3 fatty acids called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). These fatty acids are associated with lower blood pressure, cleaner arteries and better brain function. So not only are the good for our heart but they are on the list of foods that boost our brainpower.
At Medfood we are very particular about our selection of premium quality nuts. We sell Chilean and Californian Walnuts and what is the difference you might think? Chilean walnuts are the king of walnuts. They are lighter in colour and have a smooth buttery taste that is mellow. They are perfect for snacking.
Californian walnuts on the other hand have a higher oil content so they are stronger in flavour and darker in colour. They are perfect for snacking but also great in foods and salads where they add a punch of flavour.
Eat up your oily fish
Oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, tuna and sardines are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. These help to build membranes around each cell, protecting it and improving its function. They also increase blood flow to our brains, further improving our brain function.
Finally an excuse to eat chocolate
Dark chocolate contains a high amount of cacao which contains flavonoids, a type of antioxidant. Our brain is particularly susceptible to oxidative stress, which contributes to age-related cognitive decline and brain disease.
An article published in 2013 by the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, showed that cacao may encourage neuron and blood vessel growth in our brain. This in turn improves memory and learning. Ideally you should be looking at 60% cocoa solids and above, the higher the better.
At Medfood we have a great range of dark chocolate coated nuts, including dark chocolate almonds, brazil nuts and cashews. Our dark chocolate covered nuts contain 60% cocoa solids and the delicious nuts inside add a nutty butter flavour to every bite.
Olives – the secret superfood
We often use olive oil because it’s healthy but we seldom think about how it’s healthy and what are the healthy benefits. One word: polyphenols. This is a naturally occurring chemical in olives which helps to lower blood pressure and improve memory by reducing stress in the brain. Studies have found that consuming olives and olive products can help lower your risk of memory-related diseases like Alzheimer’s or Dementia.
In addition olives are full of antioxidants which helps our bodies to heal and repair itself.
Olives were our first passion when we started Medfood and our love affair with olives has never stopped. We source our olives from the best olive-growing families from across the Mediterranean and take great care in marinating our olives to bring out their natural flavours.
Our olive range is extensive and impressive and we are proud to bring traditional flavours as well as new flavours to the British table.
There is no doubt about the fact that the right nutrition can have a major impact on our bodies and brains. Eating healthy, exercise and stress reduction all help us to maintain a healthy life and adding olives, nuts and dark chocolate to our diet can boost the effects of a healthy lifestyle.
Harvard Medical Journal – Foods linked to better brainpower
BJCP – The neuroprotective effects of cocoa flavanol and its influence on cognitive performance.
Leafy greens – Plant based photo created by rawpixel.com – www.freepik.com