Ask the Nurse

Do certain foods improve focus and brain health?

These five foods help protect brain health:

  • Fatty fish: Wild salmon, tuna, trout and sardines are among the fish that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These are key for heart health and for reducing risks of Alzheimer’s disease and depression. Research shows that eating fish twice per week can slow memory loss by 10 percent.
  • Berries: Include a variety of fresh or frozen berries in your diet. These little jewels are full of powerful antioxidants. Benefits range from reduced cancer risk to decreased infections and memory protection.
  • Greens: From leafy greens like spinach and kale to veggies like broccoli and Brussels sprouts, studies show that people who eat the most green veggies have the least memory loss over 25 years.
  • Avocado: The essential monounsaturated fats in avocados promote healthy blood flow, which the brain needs for maximum effectiveness. These fats also help lower blood pressure, reducing the risk for cognitive decline.
  • Nuts: Eaten in moderation, nuts are a calorically dense source of fat (mostly heart-healthy monounsaturated fat). Nuts also are an excellent source of Vitamin E, which slows cognitive decline. One serving of nuts is 1 to 1.5 ounces, so sprinkle them on your salad or measure out a portion for a brain-boosting snack.

All My Best,
Speaking of Women's Health Nurse

July 23, 2014 at 6:35am