This article was written by Mao Shing Ni, L.Ac., D.O.M., PhD on Dr. Oz's Blog.
Living to an old age isn’t much fun if you can’t remember anything. Senility, Alzheimer’s and age-related memory loss can be delayed or even prevented with the right foods. A regular and balanced diet rich with essential amino acids, omega oils, minerals and vitamins will ensure a vibrant and sharp memory. Eat these foods to give your brain the nutrition it needs.
Protein, an important component in the making of neurotransmitters, is essential to improve mental performance. Aside from being an excellent source of high quality protein, fish are packed with essential oils, such as omega-3, which protect the brain and support its development and functioning. Deep-sea fish have the highest amounts of fatty acids; they include salmon, sea bass, halibut, mackerel and sardines.
These delicious berries are full of powerful antioxidants, which eliminate free-radical damage that causes aging, and they also possess neuroprotective properties that can delay the onset of age-related memory loss by guarding brain cells from damage caused by chemicals, plaque or trauma. They also combat inflammation, another factor in aging.
3. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are wonder foods for your brain. Packed with protein and essential fatty acids, nuts and seeds are also chockfull of the amino arginine, which stimulates the pituitary gland at the base of the brain to release growth hormone, a substance that declines quickly after age 35; this is a real anti-aging bonus for your brain!
Whip up a batch of my “Anti-aging Brain Mix” and eat a small handful in between meals as a daily snack to nourish and support your brain.
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 1/4 cup sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/3 cup of dried goji berries (also known as lycium berry and easily found in health food stores)
- 1/2 cup dried apricots
Pack in a sealed container or reseable bag to preserve freshness.
4. Cruciferous Vegetables
Broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts are all rich in choline, an essential nutrient for memory and brain health. Choline is a precursor to the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which contributes to healthy and efficient brain processes. As we age, our body’s natural choline output declines, and its neurochemical action weakens. You can eat choline-rich foods to increase your production of acetylcholine, which will improve your brain power. Other sources of choline include eggs, soybeans, peanuts, black beans and kidney beans.
Microalgae from the ocean and uncontaminated lakes, including blue-green algae, spirulina, chlorella, seaweed and kelp are easy-to-digest, high-protein and high-energy supplements – and contain over a 100 trace minerals! Available at your health food store, microalgae can often be found as powders that you dissolve in juice or as flakes you sprinkle on your food.
6. Green Tea
Green tea prevents an enzyme present in Alzheimer’s disease and is also rich in polyphenols, antioxidants that help prevent premature brain aging. Drink two cups a day to get the brain benefits