Memory, emotion, energy and so on are all related to the brain, and every thought movement of the brain needs the support of nutrition and energy. How can the brain work efficiently if it is not “fed” the right food, keeps it “hungry”, or is overnourished?
Patrick Holford, chief nutritionist at the National Health Program, has been working on how best to use nutritional treatments to protect brain health. He summed up some unknown brain preferences based on a large number of scientific experiments.
One minute self-rated memory
Holford wrote a questionnaire that helps you quickly test your memory.
If the answer to the following question is “yes”, add 1 point, and if “no”, 0 point.
- 1. Is your memory getting worse and worse?
- 2. Do you often find yourself confused and distracted?
- 3. Do you often find it difficult to articulate what you want to say?
- 4. Does it take longer to learn a thing than it used to?
- 5. When calculating figures, is it difficult to calculate them if they are not written down?
- 6. Do you often feel like you don’t have enough brain power?
- 7. Do you find that you can’t concentrate more than an hour on something?
- 8. Do you often see a familiar person whose name you can’t remember?
- 9. Did you find that you remember clearly what happened in the past, but you can’t remember what happened yesterday?
- 10. Do you often forget what day of the week it is?
- 11. Do you often put your keys in the wrong place?
- 12. I was looking for something, but I forgot what I was looking for.
- 13. Do your family and friends find that you are more forgetful than you were in the past?
- 14. Do you often talk about yourself?
Assessment of results:
A score of 4 or below indicates that you have a good memory and ability to concentrate and continue to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
From 5 to 10 points, your brain is deteriorating, you need to change your lifestyle, including diet, exercise and attitude to life, should eat more brain food;
More than 10 points indicate that your ability to remember and concentrate is clearly declining, and you need to immediately discard foods that cause brain loss and eat more foods that are beneficial to your brain’s health.
Write a prescription for brain nourishment
Holford has prescribed brain-friendly nutrition based on extensive scientific experiments.
Fish. It is recommended to choose a fish with a small head, sharp teeth and living in cold water. Women eat salmon, tuna and other fatty fish during pregnancy, which is beneficial to fetal intelligence, behavioral capacity and visual development.
Red meat and animal livers. This kind of food is rich in iron, zinc, choline, folic acid and other nutrients beneficial to the brain. Animal sources of iron, content and absorption are very high, first animal liver, followed by red meat, followed by poultry and fish and shrimp. It is recommended to eat about 100 grams of red meat daily, often in exchange for varieties, and once a week for the liver.
Nuts and seeds. Beans, nuts, seeds and other essential fatty acids, but also provide vitamins and minerals, good for brain health. Almonds are especially recommended as they are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, dietary fiber and other nutrients.
Fruit. Plum, cherry and other fruits of sugar (mainly xylose) is slowly released, can maintain blood sugar stable. According to Jiewei, a postdoctoral candidate in neurobiology at Southern Medical University, high and low blood sugar can cause problems such as inattention, memory loss and irritability. It is recommended to eat fresh fruit, eat less preserved fruit and drink less fruit juice.
Dark green vegetables. Celery broccoli and other vegetables are rich in folic acid which helps the body produce mood-boosting neurotransmitters. In addition, dark green vegetables are rich in vitamins and antioxidants, which can reduce the risk of cognitive deterioration.
Olive oil. Its saturated fatty acids are less than 10% and monounsaturated fatty acids are more than 75%. The ratio of linolenic acid to linoleic acid is less than or equal to 1: 4 in essential fatty acids, so it is a healthy edible oil.
In addition, Holford listed several foods that the brain hates and should be avoided as much as possible. One is refined sugar, including white sugar, ice sugar, brown sugar processed in modern ways, artificial sugar and so on. Second, food additives, including pigments, flavor enhancers, preservatives, thickening agents and so on. Third, artificial fat, commonly found in potato chips, cakes, bread, condensed milk and other foods.
The brain likes things
In addition to food, the brain likes to do the following things.
Like good sleep. Human melatonin levels naturally increase at night, which can alleviate insomnia, prevent depression and delay brain aging. Wang jue, a postdoctoral fellow at the institute of neuroscience at the Chinese academy of sciences, suggests going to bed between 10 and 11 p.m. and drinking milk before bed.
Like drinking water. Brain electrolytes are mostly carried by water. When the body is short of water, people have headaches, dizziness and difficulty concentrating. Develop the good habit of drinking water regularly at ordinary times, before making a decision or with more brain, drink more water.
Like to interact with the body. Some people like to play with small objects while thinking, or subconsciously tap on the desk. These small actions keep the brain alert when it comes to processing work.
Like to exercise. After exercise, the secretion of brain derived neurotrophic factor increases, help to adjust the role of neurons in the brain, brain “happy hormones” release of endorphins, helps to reduce stress, “reset” of the brain. It is recommended to exercise regularly according to the physical condition for 4 months in a row, and the memory, attention and thinking ability will all improve significantly.
Enjoy working. Ren zhihong, deputy director of the department of neurology at Beijing electric power hospital, advises older people to do more brain-boosting games, such as playing bridge, listening to lectures, playing chess and watching science TV programs. It is not recommended to do brain teasers and other illogical games, it will not promote the brain.
Like to laugh. Laughing regularly can help reduce stress, boost immunity, and sharpen your mind. Socialize with people who have a sense of humor and accept positive emotions. Older people are advised to think positively, stay optimistic and keep their brains working easily.