Growing data supports the connection between diet and memory loss. Just like some foods have brain boosting qualities, some also negatively affect them. We’re taking a deeper look into this connection and giving you the top foods to eat, including ones to avoid.
Diet and Memory Loss
A healthy brain relies on a steady flow of blood, oxygen, and other nutrients at all times. Anything that interferes with that process compromises thinking and memory, along with other more severe consequences. Vital nutrients are transported through blood vessels. Damage to these vessels or a blockage caused by cholesterol buildup can deprive the brain of oxygen-rich blood to function normally.
Diets high in saturated and trans fats are the number one cause of unhealthy cholesterol levels and buildup in blood vessels. In a recent study, a group of individuals who ate a high saturated fat diet performed worse on memory and thinking tests than a group that consumed the lowest levels of saturated fat. In addition, a gene variation associated with cholesterol levels is being studied that shows a greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s for individuals with this gene variation.
Best and Worst Foods for Your Brain
We can all agree that making better choices regarding what we consume is an excellent start towards better brain health. Here are some good and bad foods for brain health:
Best: These foods play a role in keeping your brain healthy. They also can improve specific mental tasks, such as memory and concentration.
- Fatty fish
- Dark chocolate
Worst: These foods have adverse effects on the brain, impact your memory and mood, and increase your risk of dementia.
- Sugary drinks
- Refined carbs
- High processed foods
- High mercury fish
Get Your Memory Screened. For FREE!
Anyone can develop Alzheimer’s or another dementia. So, whether you’re at increased risk or concerned about memory issues, we can get you on the right path for answers. The Neuropsychiatric Research Center of Southwest Florida offers FREE memory screenings. This quick questionnaire can determine if you would benefit from a complete evaluation with your provider, though it is not a diagnosis. Call (239) 939-7777 to schedule your free memory screening or request an appointment online today!