Alzheimer’s and dementia are some of the most emotionally triggering and worrying degenerative diseases. It is always scary to see the mind of an elderly wear away over a short period. If you are concerned about how these diseases affect you as you age or have a family history of any of these illnesses, one of the most important things you can first do is to change your diet. Here are 10 foods you should add to your diet that can help mitigate the risk of Alzheimer’s disease:
Bok choy, cauliflower, kale, and brussels sprouts contain folate and carotenoids that reduce homocysteine, an amino acid associated with cognitive impairment.
Almonds, Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Peanuts and Pecans
All of these nuts contain vitamin E, folate, omega-3s and omega-6s, magnesium, and vitamin B6.
Spinach, kale collar, and mustard greens are some leafy greens you should be adding to your diet, if you haven’t. These foods are high in B9 and folate, which reduce depression and improve cognition.
Cherries and Berries
These fruits are packed with anthocyanin that prevents the brain from going through further damage caused by free radicals. They also have anti-inflammatory properties and contain antioxidants and lots of vitamin C and E.
Some great whole grain options include kamut, quinoa, and gluten-free oats – but cereal and bread are not included.
Individuals whose diets include daily omega 3s have been proven to have 26% less risk of suffering from brain lesions that lead to dementia, compared with people who don’t consume omega 3s. Omega 3s are fatty acids that allow the brain to be in its best form. You can get your dose of omega fatty acids by eating quality omega 3 supplements or flax seeds, olive oil (not safflower), or fish.
Asparagus, Pumpkin, Squash, Tomatoes, Beets, and Carrots
If not overcooked, these vegetables contain iron, vitamin A, and folate that help promote cognition.
Legumes and Beans
Beans and legumes contain more iron, folate, magnesium, and potassium that help improve general body function and neuron firing. They also carry choline, a B vitamin that boosts acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter important for brain function.
Sage, Cinnamon, Turmeric and Cumin
Cinnamon, turmeric, cumin, and sage are spices that can help to reduce inflammation of the brain and destroy brain plaque, which can lead to memory-related problems. In addition to eating such foods, it is advisable to reduce the risk of diseases that can make your brain age such as heart disease, obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. Besides helping to decrease inflammation, these spices also regulate blood glucose, which is important for dementia or Alzheimer’s.
It is also important that you avoid the toxins in your water, food, soil and environment, caffeine, unnecessary stress, drugs, sugar, and alcohol. Try to practice making healthy decisions, encourage positive peer groups, conscientiousness, a clean environment, maintaining a healthy weight, exercise, clocking in eight hours of sleep, gratitude, and stress management.
Pumpkin Seeds and Sunflower Seeds
These seeds contain zinc, choline and vitamin E.