Feed your brain

Feed your brain

15 foods that will help to increase your brain power…

  1. Avocado is a good source of monounsaturated fats, omega-3 and -6 fatty acids, and vitamin E, which increase blood flow to the brain, and protect the brain from damage by free radicals.
  1. Beans are a good source of vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid (folate), which are important in maintaining your nervous system in general, and are associated with improved memory and alertness.  
  1. Beetroot contains a high concentration of nitrates, which help open blood vessels in the body, increasing blood flow and oxygen to the brain, and boosting its function.  
  1. Blueberries are antioxidant powerhouses, protecting the brain from oxidative damage and stress, which lead to premature ageing, Alzheimer’s and dementia.  
  1. Broccoli is a great source of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function and improve brain power.  
  1. Coconut oil – Our brain is made up of 60% fat, so incorporating good healthy fats, like coconut oil, is essential to keep the brain healthy and help combat dementia.  
  1. Celery is one of the richest sources of luteolin, a plant compound that is said to lower the rate of age-related memory loss. Luteolin calms inflammation in the brain, which can prevent the start of degeneration.
  1. Dark chocolate– The flavonols in chocolate improve blood vessel function, which in turn improves cognitive function and memory. Chocolate also improves mood and is full of antioxidants.
  1. Green leafy vegetables, especially spinach, are packed with nitrates that increase blood flow to the brain, improving mental performance. The nutrients in spinach prevent damage to DNA, cancer cell growth, and tumour growth, and also slow the effects of ageing on the brain.
  1. Nuts and seeds – especially walnuts, almonds, chia, sunflower and pumpkin seeds – increase your chances of beating age-related memory loss. They also contain omega fatty acids and vitamin E, which have been shown to prevent many forms of dementia by protecting the brain from free radicals.
  1. Oats contain a nutrient called choline, which helps cognitive performance and improves memory. Oats also release energy slowly, which helps you maintain concentration for longer.
  1. Oily fish like salmon, mackerel and sardines are high in the omega-3 fatty acids that help maintain brain capacity, concentration and alertness.
  1. Quinoa is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates and fibre, which balances blood sugar while providing the essential glucose the brain craves. Quinoa is also a good source of iron, which keeps the blood oxygenated, and the B vitamins that balance mood and protect blood vessels.
  1. Turmeric is one of the best memory-boosting foods. Its curcumin content helps brain function and also fights inflammation of brain tissue, making it more resistant to Alzheimer’s disease.
  1. Water gives the brain the electrical energy for all functioning, including thought and memory processes. Remember to drink about two litres of water daily, depending on temperature, activity and body weight.
Joni van der Merwe

About Joni van der Merwe

Your Family’s Digital editor. Avid retweeter. When I’m not scrolling Instagram you’ll find me in my garden. Keen on DIY and I don’t believe there’s anything that can’t be fixed with some chalk paint.


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