Today we’re talking about how the food we eat and how regularly we eat it, can benefit our brain function. There really is such a thing as ‘Brain Food’ and it’s not too hard to get your head around (pun intended - we couldn’t help it).
According to Harvard Health Publishing and Medical News Today, there are a wide variety of foods that have been shown to benefit the brain. From the antioxidants in berries and dark chocolate reducing inflammation to nuts and seeds contributing to improved cognitive function as we age and even coffee drinkers showing improvement in mental function after their favourite cuppa, there’s no doubt what we eat affects our brain health.
But it’s not just about what we eat, but when we’re eating.
We’ve talked previously about the importance of regular meals and snacking as a way to sustain energy, stabilise blood sugar and improve concentration. Another important benefit of regular meals is the opportunity to include a wide variety of brain benefiting foods in your diet.
When you read about food known to be good for brain health the list can seem overwhelming; green vegetables, fatty fish, nuts and seeds, coffee, dark chocolate, berries, avocados, eggs and the list goes on, but when this is broken down across 3 meals and 1-2 snacks a day, it’s easily manageable.
Breakfast might be wholegrain toast with smoked salmon, an egg and a side of spinach. Delicious, and four brain-benefiting ingredients in one serve. Add your coffee on the side and there’s five before you’ve even left the house.
Some tuna and avocado brown rice hand rolls from your local sushi place instead of the burger you usually get is a simple swap for lunch. Or pack your own tuna and avocado with a microwaveable brown rice pot for easy in-office prep. Swap out the tuna for some extra green veggies, nuts and seeds and top with your favourite sauce for a vegan brain-food option.
Choose better-for-you snacks by reading the ingredients and pair them with a brain food option to get you through the afternoon. We love enjoying our coffee with our Better Bikkie Bakes Choc Chip and a big handful of blueberries.
If that still feels a little overwhelming, a great place to start is to simply include some of the brain foods on your shopping list. If they’re in your kitchen you’ll be sure to start including them in your meal plans.