15 Best Foods To Boost Your Brainpower And Concentration

Updated: 08/27/2019

As you know, using deep breathing, meditation, visualization, brainwave entrainment, and some other exercises can help harness the potential of your brain and enhance mental clarity. In addition to this, diet also plays a vital role in improving specific mental tasks such as concentration and memory. This article describes some of the best foods to boost your brain power. Let’s check out!

Top 15 Best Foods To Boost Your Brainpower

1. Blueberries

Blueberries provide numerous health benefits. A study shows that blueberries are rich in anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agents that help to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress – conditions that may cause neurodegenerative diseases and brain aging[1]. Additionally, a few of the antioxidants found in blueberries are helpful for improving communication between brain cells. According to animal studies, blueberries are beneficial for improving memory and delaying short-term memory loss[2] [3] [4]. Thus, to help boost your brainpower, consider adding blueberries to a smoothie or sprinkle them on your breakfast cereal.

2. Turmeric

Turmeric has multiple benefits for your brain thanks to curcumin, the active component in the root. According to a study done in 2008, curcumin acts as an antioxidant, is lipophilic, and has anti-inflammatory action, which can enhance the cognitive functions in people with Alzheimer's disease[5]. Besides, it also helps to stimulate dopamine and serotonin, which both improve mood. Another animal study indicates that curcumin can be helpful for promoting brain-derived neurotrophic factor that is a type of growth hormone to help brain cells grow[6].

3. Oranges

Oranges are chock-full of vitamin C that is crucial for brain health. Per a 2014 review article, vitamin C is a potent antioxidant in the brain and has many functions such as reactive oxygen species scavenging and neuromodulation in angiogenesis[7]. Also, vitamin C can help to protect your brain from free radical damage. It supports brain health as we age.  A few good sources include lemons, guava, kiwi, bell peppers, strawberries, and tomatoes. 

4. Green Tea

Green tea is rich in the caffeine that is beneficial for boosting brain function. A recent study shows that green tea is known to induce cognitive function, mental clarity, physical activation and relaxation[8]. Apart from that, green tea contains an amino acid called L-theanine, which helps to reduce anxiety and depression, thus increasing relaxation by increasing the neurotransmitter GABA. L-theanine also counteracts the stimulating effects of caffeine, which in turn helps you relax. According to other studies, green tea may guard your brain against mental decline and lower the risk of Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases[9] [10]. Moreover, it also assists in improving memory.

5. Eggs

Eggs are high in nutrients such as folate, choline, and vitamins B6 and B12, all of which are good for your brain health. Two recent studies point out that choline is a crucial micronutrient that the body uses to create a neurotransmitter, acetylcholine, that aids in regulating mood and memory[11] [12]. Also, higher intakes of choline are associated with mental function and better memory. Besides, the B vitamins in eggs have a few roles in brain health including slowing the progression of mental decline, calming depression, and regulating sugar levels in your brain.

6. Broccoli

Broccoli consists of a variety of compounds that possess powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities, including vitamin K. According to a study published in Advances in Nutrition, vitamin K is essential for creating a type of fat called sphingolipid that is densely packed in brain cells[13]. Plus, a higher intake of vitamin K contributes to better memory. In addition to vitamin K, this vegetable offers antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, which are excellent for guarding the brain against damage. 

7. Nuts

Regular consumption of nuts can aid in improving your heart health and brain health, as they are full of nutrients such as vitamin E, healthy fats, and antioxidants. According to a 2014 review higher intake of nuts may be associated with better overall cognition in older women[14]. Vitamin E present in nuts can defend cell membranes against free radical damage, which helps to slow mental decline. 

8. Pumpkin Seeds

A 2013 study showed that pumpkin seeds might help to protect your brain and body from the damage of free radicals because of their powerful antioxidants[15]. The seeds are also loaded with magnesium, iron, copper, and zinc. A lack of zinc has been related to lots of neurological conditions such as depression, Parkinson's disease, and Alzheimer's disease. Zinc is important for nerve health. Magnesium, on the other hand, is essential for memory and learning. Low levels of magnesium are linked to some neurological diseases, including depression, migraines, and epilepsy. You can likely reap the benefits of pumpkin seeds by adding them to your diet.

9. Thyme

Thyme is beneficial for supporting your brain health. Thyme comes with the volatile oils, which can be useful for increasing the levels of omega-3 fatty acids, especially DHA in your brain. A study finds that omega-3 fatty acids can be good for your brain since they help to protect against dementia or age-related cognitive decline[16]. Furthermore, DHA ensures proper development and functioning of the brain cells. 

10. Sage

Sage can help stop the damage of free radicals in the brain owing to its carnosic acid. It also helps to boost memory recall. It also increases the anti-aging antioxidant glutathione production, which is used to deal with many neurological disorders such as autism and Alzheimer’s. Thus, to stimulate your brainpower, you can include more sage in your soups, salad dressings, stews or consume sage tea.

11. Rosemary

Rosemary possesses antioxidant and anti-inflammatory abilities that are effective at battling the damage of free radicals in the brain. According to a 2016 study published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, rosemary contains carnosic acid, a phytochemical, which protects your brain from neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease[17]. It further reverses nerve cell damage, thus stimulating nerve growth factor synthesis. 

12. Black Pepper

Black pepper consists of a pungent compound known as piperine, which is excellent for increasing beta-endorphins in your brain and boosting cognitive function. Plus, beta-endorphins can assist in improving your mood and promoting feelings of relaxation, as they have neurotransmitter qualities. Furthermore, black pepper can be helpful in preventing and treating Parkinson’s disease. It also helps to prevent Alzheimer's disease and forestall brain aging.

13. Clove

Clove functions as a mental stimulant and reduces oxidative stress because it embraces antioxidant properties. It’s also ideal for eliminating toxins and supporting cellular health thanks to its phenol compounds.  Along with that, clove oil is used as aromatherapy to boost brainpower and make you more energetic and attentive.

14. Cinnamon

According to a 2013 study, cinnamon holds compounds which have potential ability to ward off Alzheimer’s disease[18]. Plus, these compounds including epicatechin and cinnamaldehyde prevent the aggregation of tau proteins that play a vital role in stabilizing microtubules. Apart from that, the compounds housed in the cinnamon extract can be effective at protecting brain cells from swelling, thus reducing complications associated with stroke and traumatic brain injury. Taking cinnamon can defend against many age-related neurological disorders and age-related memory loss. Smelling cinnamon also improves cognitive function.

15. Holy Basil

Holy basil contains numerous medicinal properties. It consists of volatile oils, which can be useful in lowering brain damage because of decreased cerebral circulation. It also helps to calm stress by decreasing the production of stress hormones. Basil oil can be used as aromatherapy to promote memory and concentration.

To conclude, various foods can aid in keeping your brain healthy. A few foods in this list come with antioxidants that help guard your brain against damage. Others contain nutrients, which support the development of memory and brain. You can help boost your brainpower by strategically including these superfoods in your diet. All of the contents provided in this article are for informational and educational purposes. We recommend you consult a healthcare professional to determine which method is appropriate for you.

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