Tasty Brain Foods

Author: Preeti DesaiPosted on 15-07-2014

Your lifestyle, diet, exercise, sleep and stress levels have the potential to alter our brain health and mental function.

A healthy and balanced diet helps enhance cognitive abilities, protecting the brain from damage and counteracting the effects of aging.

Are you aware that nutrient dense foods can actually improve your mood? Your mood may vary according to your stress levels caused by personal or professional circumstances or health conditions.

Maintaining a healthy body and eating a vitamin rich diet definitely helps in relieving and controlling your mood fluctuations.

Brain benefits from some of Dark Chocolate


A few Dark Chocolate squares help sharpen your brain for a short time. Dark Chocolate contains Caffeine which boosts your mood and energy.

Antioxidant rich Blueberries help improve your learning.


Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and help reduce the effects of age-related conditions like Alzheimer's disease or dementia.

Complex carbs are Brain friendly carbs


Carbs are body’s preferred energy source and help raise serotonin levels, which helps to improve your mood

Can Nuts keep your brain from being healthy and young?


Nuts and Seeds are rich in antioxidant Vitamin E, which helps arrest cognitive decline as you age. Note - it does not matter if Nuts are raw or dry roasted or they are big and small in size as nutrient density doesn't change.

Why is it important to hydrate your brain?


Your blood is 82 percent water and both your brain and muscles, are 75 percent water. Drinking plenty of water can help with mental clarity and at times prevents the release of stress hormones.

Blueberries promotes brain health


A serving of Blueberries significantly improves both your learning capacity and motor skills.

Cocoa helps focus.


Cocoa and Dark Chocolate contain significant amounts of antioxidant Flavanols that improve the blood flow in the brain and enhance cognitive skills.

Water is important when stressed


We are stressed when dehydrated and water helps lower stress as 85% of the brain tissue is water.

Natural sugar is excellent for memory.


Glucose or natural sugar from food is your brain's preferred energy - note not table sugar. Fruits like apples, oranges, and grapes have a low glycemic index and the fiber in the fruit slows the absorption of fruit sugar and gives steady energy.

Sugar helps enhance alertness.


Your brain may account for about 2% of our body weight but requires about 20% of your daily calories.

Brain demands a constant supply of 'natural glucose' found in fruits, vegetables, grains etc. Eating or drinking anything sweet offers a short-term memory boost, enhances mental ability and good mood. Too much sugar results into impaired memory and additional pounds.

Eggs help memory development.


Eggs are high in protein and packed with choline, which helps memory development. Eggs are rich in Tyrosine an amino acid (protein) which helps make neurotransmitters that increase mental alertness.

Does Caffeine perk up or stimulate your brain?


Caffeine keeps you alert temporarily as it blocks adenosine, a natural sedative that makes you sleepy.

Why is Fatty Fish known as Brain food?


Fatty Fish is rich in omega 3 fatty acids, an essential fat for brain function and development. 2 'weekly' servings of fatty fish will give enough Omega 3 fats to help enhance memory - particularly important when we age.

Ice cream most certainly can boost your mood


Ice cream or other desserts are simple carbohydrates and will definitely improve your mood but the effect will only last 1 to 2 hours. Caution - Sweet foods cause blood sugar to spike and plummet, leading to fatigue and moodiness.

Nuts protect the Brain from free radical damage.


For brainpower and to balance your moods eat Walnuts, Cashews, Almonds, Peanuts and Hazelnuts.

Whole Grains help elevate your mood.


Whole Grains are rich in Vitamin B1 or Thiamine that serves an important role in maintaining a healthy nervous system and metabolizing carbohydrates. Studies show that increased Vitamin B1 or Thiamine intake elevates mood.

Honey helps enhance alertness.


Honey has natural sugar that is your brain's preferred energy source. In fact Honey has natural sugar that instantly boosts performance, endurance and reduces muscle fatigue of athletes. The glucose in honey is absorbed by the body quickly and gives an immediate energy boost, while the fructose is absorbed more slowly providing sustained energy.

Tea helps in being alert and memory temporarily.


Tea contains both caffeine and the amino acid L-Theanine which can improve alertness, reaction time, and memory. Tea also helps fight effects of stress.

Sunshine Vitamin D helps brightens your mood.


Sunshine Vitamin or Vitamin D can help brighten your mood. Optimize your Vitamin D levels with 10-20 minutes of soft sunlight couple of times a week.

Flax seeds contain Omega 3 fats that are excellent for your brain.


Omega 3 fats help repair brain cells that are needed for mood elevation. The brain is more than 60% fat, and it functions far better when it is fortified with healthy, fluid essential fatty acids like Omega 3 fatty acids.

Complex Carbs is your Brain's favorite fuel


Complex Carbs help boosting energy and your mood. Carbs are body’s preferred energy source and help raise serotonin levels. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that improves your mood.

Fatty Fish does enhance your brain function.


People eating rich diet of omega 3 fatty acids lower their risk for dementia or stroke. 2 'weekly' servings of fatty fish will give enough Omega 3 fats to help enhance memory - particularly important when we age.

Chocolate is one of the most popular mood booster.


Chocolate is a mood booster as it contains Phenylethylamine that stimulates the brain to produce Serotonin which helps boost your mood.

Chocolate can help improve your verbal memory.


A piece of Chocolate also causes an effective release of endorphins that are mood-elevating hormones. Studies show that Milk Chocolate helps improves impulse control and reaction time and helps improve visual and verbal memory.

Why do we tend to binge on nuts?


Nuts contain Pyrazine a mood-altering chemical that reaches your brain through your olfactory senses or your nose. Pyrazine triggers the pleasure center of the brain, stimulating the production of many feel-good chemicals.

Peanuts contain trace mineral Boron that helps boost mental alertness.


Fruits and Nuts that contain trace mineral Boron are considered Brain Food as Boron stimulates the brain and boosts mental alertness. Boron is also found in Legumes, Broccoli, Apples, Pears, Peaches and Grapes.

Choose healthy Snacks that help energize and boost your mood.


If you are feeling depressed or suffering from menopausal hormonal fluctuations, certain snacks can certainly boost your mood. Snacks that contain Bananas, Tomatoes, Walnuts and Bread help the body raise levels of Serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter in the brain that regulates mood and helps fight depression.

Many foods can help fight Depression.


Eat foods that contain the amino acid Tryptophan as it helps produce brain chemical Serotonin that elevates your mood. Foods rich in Tryptophan include milk, poultry, and nuts.

Caffeine may help you to concentrate.


Caffeine can energize plus help you focus and concentrate but its effect lasts only for a short while. More than 4 cups or 500 mg of Caffeine per day may cause jitters and grogginess.

Salmon has nutrients that help boost your mood


Omega 3 fats help create the receptor sites for neurotransmitters like Serotonin. If there are more Omega 3 fats in your blood you are likely to make more Serotonin the brain chemical vital to boost your mood.

Cashews help boost your mood but only a handful a day


Cashews, Almonds, and Hazelnuts contain Magnesium, which plays a vital role in converting sugar into energy. Sugar released helps boost your mood. Magnesium deficiency can drain you of energy.

Oatmeal is not only energizing helps lift mood


Complex carbs and soluble fiber in Oatmeal helps stabilize your blood-glucose levels and deliver sustained energy. Add more brain nutrients to Oatmeal by adding strawberries.

Oatmeal helps reduce risk of cognitive decline.


Oatmeal contains ferulic acid a potent antioxidant that protects brain cells by neutralizing toxins and helps reduce risk of cognitive decline of aging. Add more brain nutrients to Oatmeal by adding sliced almonds.

Beans are energizing and help lift your mood


Beans are high in Fiber which is an energy stabilizer. Fiber slows digestion, providing a more steady supply of energy throughout the day. Other foods that contain soluble fiber are Peas, Citrus fruits, Strawberries and Apples.

Lean Meat is mood boosting and energizing.


Lean Pork, lean Beef, Skinless Chicken, and Turkey are healthy sources of protein and good mood boosters as they contain the amino acid tyrosine. Tyrosine boosts levels of dopamine and norepinephrine, brain chemicals that help you feel more alert and focused. Meats contain Vitamin B12, which helps fight depression.

Leafy Greens are energizing and help boost your mood


Folates or Vitamin B9 in leafy green vegetables, including Spinach and Romaine lettuce helps fight depression. Other good Folate food sources include Legumes, Nuts, and Citrus Fruits.

Poultry does manage to elevate your mood.


Poultry based meals are rich in Tyrosine that helps elevate levels of feel good neurotransmitters, Norepinephrine and Dopamine. Tyrosine can help boost your level of energy, and also helps neutralize effects of stress.

Walnuts can definitely help lift your mood.


Walnuts are rich in Omega-3 essential fatty acids that are needed for mood-lifting neurotransmitters to function properly thus help fight depression. Other Omega-3 fatty acids food sources include Salmon, Sardines, Flaxseeds, and Omega-3 fortified eggs.

Whole grain bread helps fight depression.


Whole grain bread contains tryptophan an essential amino acid that cannot be produced by the body. Tryptophan helps make Serotonin a neurotransmitter, which determines if you are in a good mood or depressed.

Milk is known as a feel good food.


Milk contains high amount of Calcium that helps reduce your stress levels and anxiety. Milk contains amino acid Tryptophan that helps your body produce Brain Chemical Serotonin, which elevates your mood.

How Spinach can help boost your mood?


Spinach is rich in Folic Acid and Magnesium, and both these nutrients boost your moods. Folates or Vitamin B9 in Spinach helps fight depression. Magnesium in Spinach plays a vital role in converting sugar into energy and Magnesium deficiency can drain you of energy.

Does Coffee help you focus or leads to fatigue?


Coffee effect though short term is one of the most popular pick-me-ups. Caffeine stimulates your metabolism and temporarily improves mental focus and energy. Too much coffee kills sleep - and lack of sleep obviously leads to fatigue and is an energy buster.

Did you know that Fruits and Vegetables with high water content help energize your brain?


Fresh Fruits and vegetables that have a high water content help you stay hydrated and energized. Fruits and vegetables contain natural sugar that is brains preferred energy source and water that helps release stress.

Why are Brazil Nuts known as natural mood boosters?


Brazil Nuts are rich in mineral Selenium are natural mood boosters and acts as an anti-depressant.

Why do we love the aroma of freshly brewed coffee?


Freshly grounded coffee contains Pyrazine a mood-altering chemical that reaches your brain through your olfactory senses or your nose. Pyrazine triggers the pleasure center of the brain, stimulating the production of many feel-good chemicals.

Which foods help fight Depression and boost your mood?


Complex carbohydrates found in Beans, Potatoes, and Whole Grains increase bioavailability of Tryptophan in the brain. Tryptophan helps produce brain chemical Serotonin that elevates your mood. Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, Dried Sunflower Seeds, Bananas, Milk and Peanuts contain higher amounts of Tryptophan as compared to other amino acids

Lean Beef does help tackle depression.


Lean Beef is rich in Vitamin B12 that enables the nervous system and the brain to function properly. A daily dose of Vitamin B12 may prevent depression as it needed for the production of red blood cells and Serotonin.

Purple grape juice helps your memory. Is that a Myth of Fact?


Purple grape juice contains natural antioxidants called Flavanols that improve blood flow in the brain and enhance cognitive skills. Improved blood flow in the brain helps maintain your memory and improve your general disposition.

How does a cup of Yogurt help boost your mood?


One of the reason you experience moodiness is due to Calcium not being properly used by the body. Consuming Calcium rich foods like Yogurt helps alleviate depression and anxiety. A cup of Yogurt contains about 488 mg of Calcium that helps boost your mood.

Why is Shellfish considered to be a mood booster?


Seafood and shellfish are mood boosters as they contain a good amount of Selenium. Selenium boosts your mood by reducing anxiety. Selenium neutralizes the effects of harmful hormonal levels created by stress.

Did you know that Bananas can elevate your mood in a jiffy?


Mood problems are usually related to stress or missing nutrients in your diet. A single banana actually packs a good energy boost and is high in Magnesium that boosts your mood.

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