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Plant-based foods for improved cognitive functions

Diet is a big determinant of how the bran functions, therefore, it has to be right for the brain to perform optimally. Cognitive decline is an imminent health issue, especially with age and several other factors. Also, it is quite obvious that there is no miracle drug or single solution to counter the decline. This is because the reasons causing cognitive decline are different therefore the solutions could be different as well. Maintaining an alert and apprehensive brain is a collection of several efforts. The efforts could include lifestyle practices, dietary routines and physical exercises.

From a nutritional point of view, it is advisable to adhere to a dietary pattern that incorporates key elements for brain health: plenty of fruits and vitamins, green leafy vegetables, legumes and whole grains. Plant-based diets are the way to go based on the numerous neuro-protective effects attributed to them. Alzheimer’s disease is an example of a condition which crops up resulting in reduced cognitive functioning. There are other types of cognitive impairments as well.

Plants rich in flavonoids, polyphenols and other antioxidants are also quite helpful as the compounds helps in reducing inflammation and oxidative stress. Oxidative stress arises when the body isn’t able to counter free toxic radicals in the body due to low antioxidant defenses. The result is brain cell death and damage and consequently, cognitive decline. Some of the plants with these constituents include in the diet include berries and green vegetables. The berries in context include blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries. Some of the most preferred leafy green vegetables include spinach, kale and collard greens. Also, there are special compounds for brain health that are only found in organic herbal supplements. The herbal supplements can be mixed with different foods.

  • Berries

Flavonoids present in the berries aid the body, and especially the brain in many ways. They have profound anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties hence they are able to wade off various genitive and neuropsychiatric complications. Some of the antioxidants include anthocyanin, catechin, and quercetin. They aid in improving memory and keeping it vibrant. Berries also aid in boosting communication within the brain and coordination as well. The berries in context include blueberries, raspberries, mulberries, strawberries, and blackberries.

  • Nuts

Nuts are excellent sources of protein and healthy fats. Walnut is an example of a nut which lies in this category. It has the overall effect of enhancing memory and other cognitive functions. Walnuts also contain a special type of omega-3 fatty acid which aids in lowering blood pressure and protecting various blood vessels, especially arteries. Sound heart health also impacts positively on brain health. Peanuts also impact positively on brain health as they contain quite a considerable amount of unsaturated fats and proteins. They also contain vital minerals and vitamins which make sure the brain the brain is active and alert. Peanuts also contain a special compound referred to as resveratrol. The non-flavonoid antioxidant is responsible the neuro-protective effects associated with the nuts.

  • Green leafy vegetables

The most preferred vegetables for improved cognitive functions and broccoli, kale, spinach and collards. The vegetables contain certain constituents which are essential for brain health: vitamins, minerals and antioxidants e.g. folate, beta carotene and lutein. Broccoli is a perfect example of a special leafy vegetable as far as brain health is concerned. It is low in calories content and high in fiber. Also, it contains compounds referred to as glucosinolates which aid in preventing oxidative stress and the associated neurodegenerative disease.  Kales also contain glucosinolates and works similarly to vitamin C and K.

  • Organic herbal supplements

Bacopa monnieri has the ability to boost thinking skills, alertness and memory. This way declining brain functions caused by different functions are kept at bay. Ginkgo biloba has the effect of enhancing circulation and promoting blood flow to the brain. Ashwagandha aids in preventing oxidative stress which results in damage and death of brain cells. This way functional impairments associated with damage of brain cells are avoided. Ginseng contains bioactive compounds referred to as ginsenosides, which aid in suppressing beta-amyloid levels in the brain. It also helps in improving the memory in the long run.

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