Laurence Lee

September 5, 2022 in Supplements

Whether you want to change your diet during exam season or stay sharp at work, optimizing your nutrition can really go a long way. I reviewed a study that presented solid evidence of the relationship between food and the brain. A specific selection of foods can improve specific brain processes and overall brain function. 

I've listed a few of the most beneficial cognitive-enhancing foods below:

1. Wholegrains- Can improve focus and concentration

Including whole grains in your diet can increase your energy, which keeps you on your toes for the day.

Wholegrains have a low GI, which means they release energy slower in the body than other foods. This keeps you mentally active throughout the day. 

Unhealthy carbs can lead to irritability and longer periods of brain fog. You should eat 'brown' wholegrain bread, pasta, rice, and cereals.

2. Tomatoes- Can prevent free radical damage

An anti-oxidant called lycopene found in tomatoes protects the brain from free radical damage to cells.

This damage often leads to Alzheimer's and dementia. You can combine tomatoes with other foods that contain lycopene and other protective phytonutrients, such as pink grapefruit and watermelon. 

Enjoy tomatoes with some olive oil to enhance the body's absorption.

3. Eggs- Prevents brain shrinkage

Eggs are a good source of vitamins B6 and B12, choline, and folate, which benefit brain health. Choline is a micronutrient that the body uses to make acetylcholine, which is an important neurotransmitter for proper mood and better memory. 

A study I found showed that a good amount of choline is linked to better mental function. 

The B vitamins also slow the rate of cognitive decline in older adults by affecting amino acids that are linked to dementia. Folate can also help patients with Alzheimer's and dementia.

4. Broccoli- Can increase brain power

Broccoli is a good source of vitamin K, which enhances brain function and increases brain power.

Studies have shown that broccoli is also high in a compound called glucosinolates. This compound inhibits the breakdown of an important neurotransmitter, acetylcholine, which is vital in the CNS to increase brain sharpness.

What Food Can Increase Memory?

Some various fruits and vegetables can increase memory and the way you learn things. 

These include:

  • Pumpkin seeds: Rich in zinc, which supports memory and thinking ability. They also have magnesium, tryptophan, and B vitamins, improving memory and reducing stress.
  • Blueberries: Evidence shows that blueberries can improve short-term memory and prevent short-time memory loss. They contain protective compounds, anthocyanins.
  • Sage: Sage has a reputation for boosting memory and concentration. However, most people use sage as an essential oil. You should consider adding fresh sage to your diet as well. Add to the end of cooking to retain the beneficial oils.
  • Fish: Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial in increasing the gray matter of the brain. This improves your learning abilities and memory. Fish can also help with the degeneration of the brain.

The incorporation of these foods into a diet can be paired with the use of memory-boosting supplements and memory-boosting exercises.

Which Food Is Not Good for The Brain?

After analyzing several studies, I found that a large part of our everyday diets might actually be bad for our brain health. In my research, I found that many people try to avoid/cut back on these foods to promote sharp thinking, fight inflammation, and have good decision-making. 

These foods are not good for your brain:

  • Refined carbs
  • Foods that contain nitrates
  • Fried foods
  • Sodas and sugary drinks
  • Tuna
  • Processed meats
  • Fast food

Although the foods above do not provide tangible benefits, it's best to cut down on consumption gradually, as eliminating them suddenly might cause cravings that can offset the healthy lifestyle we aim to achieve.

Are Bananas Good for Memory?

Bananas are well-known brain food. This tasty fruit is rich in magnesium and potassium, which gives your brain energy and sharpens your focus.

This helps you pay attention and learn better. Bananas also have vitamins and minerals that help memory and the ability to retain information. Like energy drinks, bananas also give users an instant mental energy boost that can help overall productivity.

About the author 

Laurence Lee

Lee is a neuroscientist who has dedicated his career to understanding the inner workings of the brain. He has seen firsthand the power of these supplements in improving cognitive function and believes that more people should be aware of their benefits. In his articles, Lee shares his extensive knowledge on the subject and provides unbiased reviews of different products.

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