12 best brain foods: Memory, concentration, and brain health

The foods we eat can have a big affect on the structure and health of our brains. Eating a brain-boosting diet can support both short- and long-run brain function. The mind is an energy-intensive organ, using around 20 percentage of the body ’ mho calories, so it needs enough of good fuel to maintain concentration throughout the day. The mind besides requires certain nutrients to stay goodly. omega-3 fatty acid fatty acids, for model, help build and repair brain cells, and antioxidants reduce cellular tension and excitement, which are linked to brain age and neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer ’ second disease.

This article explores the scientific attest behind 12 of the best brain foods.

1. Oily fish

oily fish canned tuna in a bowl. contribution on PinterestOily fish contains omega-3 that can help boost brain health. greasy pisces are a good source of omega-3 fatty acid fatso acids. Omega-3s aid build membranes around each cell in the torso, including the brain cells. They can, therefore, improve the structure of brain cells called neurons. A 2017 study found that people with high levels of omega-3 fatty acid had increased blood stream in the brain. The researchers besides identified a connection between omega-3 fatty acid levels and better cognition, or thinking abilities. These results suggest that eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acid, such as greasy fish, may boost mind function. Examples of greasy fish that contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acid admit :

  • salmon
  • mackerel
  • tuna
  • herring
  • sardines

People can besides get omega-3 fatty acid from soybeans, nuts, linseed, and other seeds .

2. Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate contains cocoa, besides known as cacao. Cacao contains flavonoids, a type of antioxidant. Antioxidants are specially crucial for mind health, as the brain is highly susceptible to oxidative tension, which contributes to age-related cognitive decline and brain diseases. Cacao flavonoids seem to be dear for the brain. According to a 2013 review, they may encourage nerve cell and blood vessel growth in parts of the brain involved in memory and learn. They may besides stimulate blood flow in the mind. Some inquiry besides suggests that the flavonoid component of cocoa may reverse memory problems in snails. Scientists have yet to test this in humans. however, a 2018 cogitation in humans besides supports the brain-boosting effects of dark cocoa. The researchers used imaging methods to look at natural process in the brain after participants corrode chocolate with at least 70 percentage cacao. The researchers concluded that eating this type of benighted chocolate may improve genius malleability, which is crucial for learning, and may besides provide other brain-related benefits.

3. Berries

Like dark cocoa, many berries contain flavonoid antioxidants. Research suggests that these may make the berries good food for the brain. Antioxidants help by reducing inflammation and oxidative try. The antioxidants in berries include anthocyanin, caffeic acid, catechin, and quercetin. A 2014 revue notes that the antioxidant compounds in berries have many positive effects on the mind, including :

  • improving communication between brain cells
  • reducing inflammation throughout the body
  • increasing plasticity, which helps brain cells form new connections, boosting learning and memory
  • reducing or delaying age-related neurodegenerative diseases and cognitive decline

Antioxidant-rich berries that can boot brain health admit :

  • strawberries
  • blackberries
  • blueberries
  • blackcurrants
  • mulberries

4. Nuts and seeds

plowshare on PinterestNuts and seeds are a plant-based source of healthful fats and proteins. Eating more nuts and seeds may be estimable for the brain, as these foods contain omega-3 fatty acid fatso acids and antioxidants. A 2014 study found that a higher overall nut intake was linked to better brain function in older age. Nuts and seeds are besides rich sources of the antioxidant vitamin E, which protects cells from oxidative tension caused by free radicals. As a person ages, their brain may be exposed to this form of oxidative stress, and vitamin E may therefore subscribe brain health in older historic period. A 2014 review found that vitamin east may besides contribute to improved cognition and reduce risk of Alzheimer ’ s disease. The nuts and seeds with the highest amounts of vitamin E admit :

  • sunflower seeds
  • almonds
  • hazelnuts

fully exploring vitamin E ’ sulfur effects on the brain will require further research.

5. Whole grains

Eating unharmed grains is another means to benefit from the effects of vitamin E, with these grains being a well source of the vitamin. Whole-grain foods include :

  • brown rice
  • barley
  • bulgur wheat
  • oatmeal
  • whole-grain bread
  • whole-grain pasta

6. Coffee

coffee bean is a well-known concentration aid — many drink it to stay wake up and encourage focus. The caffeine in coffee blocks a substance in the genius called adenosine, which makes a person feel sleepy.

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Beyond boosting watchfulness, a 2018 study suggests that caffeine may besides increase the mind ’ mho capacity for processing data. The researchers found that caffeine causes an addition in brain randomness, which refers to complex and variable brain action. When randomness is high, the brain can process more information. coffee is besides a source of antioxidants, which may support brain health as a person gets older. One analyze has linked lifelong coffee pulmonary tuberculosis with boil down hazard of :

  • cognitive decline
  • stroke
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Alzheimer’s disease

caffeine can, however, affect a person ’ south sleep and doctors do not recommend caffeine pulmonary tuberculosis for everyone.

7. Avocados

A reservoir of sanitary unsaturated fatten, avocado may support the brain. Eating monounsaturated fats may reduce blood pressure, and high lineage pressure is linked with cognitive worsen. frankincense, by reducing high lineage pressure, the unsaturated fats in avocado may lower the risk of cognitive descent. other sources of healthful unsaturated fats include :

  • almonds, cashews, and peanuts
  • flaxseed and chia seeds
  • soybean, sunflower, and canola oils
  • walnuts and Brazil nuts
  • fish

8. Peanuts

Peanuts are a legume with an excellent nutritional profile. They contain batch of unsaturated fats and protein to keep a person ’ s department of energy levels up throughout the day. Peanuts besides provide key vitamins and minerals to keep the brain healthy, including high levels of vitamin E and resveratrol. Resveratrol is a natural non-flavonoid antioxidant found in peanuts, mulberries, and rhubarb. evidence from a review article suggests that resveratrol can have protective effects, such as helping to prevent cancers, excitement, and neurological diseases, including Alzheimer ’ mho and Parkinson ’ sulfur.

9. Eggs

Enjoyed by many for breakfast, eggs can be an effective genius food. They are a good source of the surveil B vitamins :

  • vitamin B-6
  • vitamin B-12
  • folic acid

recent research suggests that these vitamins may prevent brain shrinkage and delay cognitive refuse .

10. Broccoli

share on PinterestBroccoli and other cruciferous vegetables are rich in fiber and nutrients. a well as being a low-calorie reference of dietary fiber, broccoli may be beneficial for the brain. Broccoli is deep in compounds called glucosinolates. When the consistency breaks these down, they produce isothiocyanates. Isothiocyanates may reduce oxidative stress and lower the hazard of neurodegenerative diseases. Broccoli besides contains vitamin C and flavonoids, and these antioxidants can far boost a person ’ randomness brain health. early cruciferous vegetables that contain glucosinolates include :

  • brussels sprouts
  • bok choy
  • cabbage
  • cauliflower
  • turnips
  • kale

11. Kale

Leafy greens, including kale, may support mind health. Like broccoli, kale contains glucosinolates, and leafy greens besides contain early key antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. This is why many consider kale to be a superfood .

12. Soy products

soy products are full-bodied in a particular group of antioxidants called polyphenols. research has linked polyphenols with a reduce risk of dementia and improved cognitive abilities in regular ripening processes. Soy products contain polyphenols called isoflavones, including daidzein and genistein. These chemicals act as antioxidants, providing a range of health benefits throughout the torso .

Supplements for brain function

In addition to making dietary changes, some people consider taking supplements to improve their genius function. But do these supplements actually work ? Taking vitamins B, C, or E, beta-carotene, or magnesium may improve brain function if a person has a lack in any of them. If a person does not have a lack, these supplements are unlikely to improve mental performance. research suggests that taking ginseng may improve this performance. however, promote studies are needed before doctors can recommend ginseng to enhance brain function .


The foods listed above may help improve a person ’ second memory and concentration. Some may besides reduce the gamble of accident and age-related neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer ’ randomness and Parkinson ’ s. Some of the foods contain compounds such as healthful fatty acids, which can help improve the structure of mind cells called neurons. other compounds, such as sugars and saturated fats, may damage mind cell structures. Brain-boosting foods tend to contain one or more of the follow :

  • antioxidants, such as flavonoids or vitamin E
  • B vitamins
  • healthful fats
  • omega fatty acids

Beyond adjusting the diet, a person can optimize their brain function by :

  • not eating too much or too little
  • getting enough sleep
  • keeping hydrated
  • exercising regularly
  • reducing stress through yoga, mindfulness, or meditation
  • reducing alcohol intake

Eating a brain-boosting diet will besides provide many benefits for the entire body .

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