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Memory Loss: How Good Nutrition Can Help 

 

Chocolate conatains two chemicals that are shown to be good for the brain, and evidence is mounting that moderate intake of red wine is also good for it. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and “healthy” fats are all good for the brain. Antioxidants literally keep your brain cells from “rusting.” Avoiding the wrong kinds of fats (saturated and trans fats) helps maintain proper cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of stroke. The 

right kinds of fats, such as omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in cold water fish and seeds like flax, are essential to the creation of the myelin sheath that protects nerve cells. Flax seed oil can be used as a supplement, but you should check with your doctor before taking flax seed supplements if you have estrogen dominance or are a breast cancer survivor. Fish oil capsules and supplements are available as well.

Certain classes of B vitamins are felt to be neuroprotective and are being used in clinical trials for treating memory loss. B vitamins protect neurons and help reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Rich food sources of B vitamins include liver, wheat germ, rice polish, molasses, seeds – sunflower, flax, especially sesame, as well as beans and legumes (lentils). Whole wheat and whole grain products also contain the complete spectrum of B vitamins.

Alpha-tocopherol, or vitamin E, in doses of 2000 international units has been shown to slow progression of Alzheimer's disease. It works as a free radical scavenger and promotes nerve cell viability.

An interesting research study found that humans are fed double the numbers of servings of fruits and vegetables (i.e. from 5 a day to 10 a day), the subjects increased their antioxidant values in blood plasma. This boost in such values could potentially have important results in protecting mental capacity in older adults. Consumption of fruits and vegetables that are high in antioxidant levels can help prevent Alzheimer’s. Fruits with high levels of antioxidants – listed from those with the most to lesser amounts – are prunes, raisins, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, plums, oranges, red grapes and cherries. Vegetables, listed in the same order, are kale, spinach, brussels sprouts, alfalfa sprouts, broccoli florets, beets, red bell pepper, onion, corn and eggplant.

Since acetylcholine is one of the neurotransmitters important to staving off Alzheimer’s, it makes sense to eat foods rich in this neurotransmitter. Acetylcholine-rich foods include: egg yolks, peanuts, wheat germ, liver, meat, fish, milk, cheese and vegetables (especially broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower). That is literally food for thought.

Diet sodas contain neurotoxic chemical sweeteners that do NOTHING to help your brain function well, so it would be better to drink water instead. Because 60-70% of the body is water, it is very important to get enough each day. Water is vital for proper circulation and intestinal function. Improved circulation supplies the brain with the glucose and oxygen it needs, and a healthy regular digestive tract eliminates toxins helping both the body and the brain.

Note: Some statements in this article may not be approved by the FDA. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as professional medical advice.

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Greg Cryns
The Compleat Mother Magazine
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