BOOST YOUR BRAIN POWER WITH NUTRITION!
by Aneequa Godart DipCNM
Did you know that our brain cells require twice the amount of energy than the other
cells of the body? To stay focused and efficient all day long, this energy level
needs to be maintained. Luckily for us, simple tweaks to your daily diet can help
to boost those little grey cells and keep the mind sharp!
We’re often told that this is the most important meal of the day, but not
everyone likes to face food first thing in the morning. Research actually shows that
eating a nourishing breakfast can give you a mental edge and by keeping your
blood sugar levels steady, it helps improve focus and attention span as well as
boosting short-term memory and creativity. Porridge with blueberries and a dollop of
almond butter releases energy slowly so it will keep your brain fuelled for optimal
performance, or for you non-breakfast types why not try a simple mid-morning
smoothie with almond milk, berries, cherries and flaxseed?
Many of us need that cup of coffee in the morning before we can face the world
and it’s no surprise- that morning cup has been shown to improve memory and
cognitive function whilst boosting energy and alertness. Do bear in mind,
more than 2 cups might keep you from sleeping at night and can also take a toll
on your adrenal glands.
To keep feeding the brain the energy it needs throughout the day, opt for a slow
releasing ‘healthier’ carbs such as wholegrain bread for your sandwich. Eggs
are a good shout as they contain vitamins B6 and B12 which reduce homocysteine
in the blood. High levels of homocysteine have been associated with stroke,
cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s. Choline found in egg yolk is also a great
If you’re more of a salad fan, bulk up on your leafy green veg such as spinach
and kale, with avocado, seeds and tomatoes. Pumpkin seeds are full of zinc
which enhances memory skills, and are also full of stress-busting magnesium.
Salmon is one of the best brain food options for dinner because fish is high in
Omega 3 fatty acids (one of the so-called ‘good fats’) and amongst other wonderful
uses they help to build cell membranes throughout the body including the brain.
Omega 3 also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects which can slow down
deterioration of the brain.
Simple to cook, simply squeeze some lemon juice and black pepper on a fillet, wrap it in foil and bake it in the oven for around 10 minutes at 200c. Serve with a side of green veg such as broccoli which is a source of two crucial nutrients that help brain function. Vitamin K helps strengthen cognitive abilities and choline, our memory booster.
Walnuts are an excellent source of protein and healthy fats, and may also improve
memory. A 2015 study from UCLA linked higher walnut consumption to improved
cognitive test scores. Flavonoids in blueberries (the pigment that gives berries
their colour), also help improve memory, research shows.
In a 2012 study published in Annals of Neurology, researchers at Harvard's Brigham and Women's Hospital found that women who consumed two or more servings of strawberries and blueberries each week delayed memory decline by nearly 3 years.
If you don’t eat fish, try a good quality Omega 3 supplement such as one from
the Biocare or Solgar ranges. Acetyl-L-carnitine is an amino acid produced
naturally in your body that plays an important role in your metabolism,
particularly in energy production. Taking acetyl-L-carnitine has been claimed to
make you feel more alert, improve memory and slow down age-related
As well as food, staying hydrated helps to keep our brain in check too. Do you drink
your 6-8 glasses of water a day? Keeping a full reusable drinks bottle with you at all
times, on your desk and in your bag, is a great way of keeping on top of your
consumption. If you find water boring, add a refreshing twist with some lime or
Green tea has also been shown to induce mental alertness and counts as your daily
liquid intake, but be mindful that some teas can still be caffeinated and keep you up
So there you have it. After reading this you may already realise that your current
nutrition is lacking in brain boosting foods, so why not give these easy hacks a go!
Aneequa is based in between Lisbon and London. She addresses specific health
concerns by giving her clients tailored nutritional strategies based on their health
goals, ranging from weight management, improved energy levels to better
quality skin, hair and nails.
If you're interested in a nutritional consultation, contact Aneequa directly on firstname.lastname@example.org to book an appointment or visit her website www.aneequagodart.com