Your Diet Is Making You Dumb
Too often we base our food choices on either appetite or looking better in a bikini. Unfortunately, even if you're focus is a healthy body, you may be missing some key nutrients and effectively ignoring the most important part of your body: your brain. Food and nutrition play an enormous role in the health and functioning of our brains. Do you suffer from headaches? Does anxiety get you down? Do you feel foggy or sluggish around mid-afternoon each day? Many people just accept these symptoms as annoying parts of life but the odds are that you're denying your brain of the nutrients it needs to keep you sharp. Here are nine foods, nutrients and supplements that will feed your brain:
Supplements: Improve mood and concentration
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Found in fatty fish like salmon, Omega-3 fatty acids help to keep neurones in your brain healthy and improve concentration. There is also evidence that Omega-3 fatty acids help to create positive outlook on life, allowing you to enjoy your new found clarity even more. Try supplementing with Omega-3 or simply enjoy salmon, trout, mackerel or red snapper a few times each week.
5-HTP increases serotonin levels in the brain. This offers the benefit of a more positive mood, decreased anxiety and reduced prevalence of headaches. 5-HTP is also being used as a treatment for depression and eating problems, which can directly impact fatigue and concentration. Taking 3, 100mg tablets daily can be helpful for individuals suffering from anxiety, lacking motivation or experiencing headaches and fogginess.
Vitamins B & C
Vitamins B and C are necessary for normal brain functioning. Interestingly, many people who report high levels of stress, exhaustion and who experience regular afternoon crashes are deficient in these vitamins. A Vitamin B complex can be taken each morning to increase energy and eliminate deficiency. Vitamin C is best taken with dark leafy greens or iron rich foods.
Herbal Supplements: Reduce headaches, anxiety and improve energy
Feverfew has been used for centuries in herbal medicine. Recently, natural doctors have been using feverfew to treat headaches. Studies have shown that feverfew has similar properties to aspirin and can reduce headaches by as much as 70 per cent. Try a daily dose of feverfew to reduce your incidence of headaches and fogginess.
Ashwagandha is also known as Indian ginseng. It is used in various regions all over the world to reduce inflammation and stomach issues. However, ashwagandha has also been shown to reduce anxiety and fatigue, likely through its anti-inflammatory properties. To get the full benefits of Ashwagandha, take an oral supplement every morning.
Asian ginseng, also known as Panax ginseng is a super strong ginseng root that strengthens immunity and can actually improve cognitive function of the brain. It is incredibly energizing and is a super powered anti-inflammatory. Use ginseng to combat fatigue and improve concentration. Asian ginseng can be bought in a variety of formats. Try adding liquid Panax ginseng to smoothies for an afternoon or morning boost.
Food: Increase concentration and energy
Pumpkin seeds contain a large amount of zinc and omega 3 fatty acids, both of which improve brain function. Zinc helps to increase concentration and omega fatty acids maintain a healthy brain. Pumpkin seeds are delicious on salads or as an afternoon snack. Increase your zinc intake by adding these to your diet.
Blueberries are well know for their rich antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds, both of which help to support the nervous system, improve brain function and may even reduce the chances of memory loss. It isn’t difficult to enjoy blueberries. Fresh, frozen, in smoothies or as part of a parfait, these versatile and flavourful berries can easily be added to any meal.
Green tea is a mild stimulant that offers tons of clean energy without too much caffeine. In addition, green tea contains strong cancer fighting anti oxidants that help to support your entire body’s functions including your brain. Wake up with a cup or organic green tea to start your morning with energy.