If you haven’t been deliberately eating to fuel your mind, chances are you aren’t doing enough to keep it sharp. Food is more than just a means to avoid hunger – it can help make the difference in your performance, thought processes and your mood. There’s a word for the hungry, angry feeling we get when we’re not eating as well as we should: Hangry. Far too often, we submit to our hunger and grab whatever’s nearby instead of considering what will fuel our bodies and sharpen our minds for success.
Lucky for you, there are delicious and nutritious foods with the power to keep your mind working at peak capacity and increase its longevity, and when you enjoy these treats, your mind will be ready to face anything thrown in its direction.
Yummy Brain Food
Here are five delicious foods that will satisfy your desire for guilty pleasure – without the guilt!
1. Almonds. Almonds are super powerful when it comes to strengthening brain power. Scientists have found that the nutrients in an ounce of almonds are effective enough to improve brain function by maintaining sharpness and alertness, and also improving memory.
* Just one ounce a day is enough to feel the positive effects of almonds on the brain.
* Crush them and include them in your yogurt snack, smoothie, or just eat them on their own.
2. Dark chocolate. You’ve probably heard that this sweet treat has healthy benefits, but did you know about it’s mind-sharpening properties? Take a look at the many ways dark chocolate is able to improve brain function:
* It stimulates the production of endorphins in the brain. Endorphins are the hormones which improve overall mood and keep you in the right frame of mind to tackle challenges.
* Between one-half and one ounce of dark chocolate each day will help to boost your concentration, thanks to its caffeine content.
* The antioxidants found in dark chocolate aid blood flow, which is a significant factor for achieving optimum brain performance.
3. Blueberries. You’re probably already aware that blueberries are packed with all sorts of nutrients, but you likely don’t know how those nutrients impact the brain.
* For starters, blueberries are tied to improved motor skills and learning capacity, both of which are important in your everyday life. Even though motor skills don’t sound like a part of the brain’s duties, they really are. Your brain controls everything in your body, including your motor skills!
* One cup per day can also help protect the brain from the effects of stress, thereby possibly reducing the risk of mental disorders like Alzheimer’s.
4. Green tea. Having two cups of green tea per day helps to lessen the risk of cognitive impairment in older adults. Other brain disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s are less likely to occur if you consume green tea regularly.
* To top it off, green tea also stimulates dopamine levels, resulting in a pleasant mood.
5. Wild salmon. Wild salmon, or other fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids, help to reduce inflammation in the brain and contribute to overall healthy brain function. About 4 ounces of the fish 2-3 times per week can result in a sharper, healthier mind.
So what are you waiting for? It’s time for a snack! Get started on your mind-sharpening food regimen today to ensure your brain is ready and able to take you through any kind of day you wake up to. And enjoy what you’re eating while you’re at it!