Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Brain nutrients - the effect of nutrients on brain function

One interesting article and research can be read here.

And totally unrelated (yeah, sure), some ideas about this.

1. Balanced sugar intake
Sugar is your brain's super fuel. But you have to make sure you are getting the right types and right amount at the right time (sound like the medication training i just got last week, he he!). Too much ‘fast’ sugar means a blood sugar high and hyperactivity. The excess sugar in the blood gets dumped into storage as abdominal fat. Eating little and often helps keep your  energy and concentration even. Too much sugar and you may be hyperactive and find it hard to concentrate. Too little and you may feel tired, irritable and find it hard to concentrate.

How to balance blood sugar?
- Go for foods with slow releasing sugars: oats, brown rice, rye bread, whole wheat pasta, brown bread and other stuff like those.
- Eat 3 meals and 2 snacks a day. This will help to maintain your blood sugar levels, and prevent highs and lows.
- Combine protein with carbohydrate Protein slows down the absorption of sugars found in carbohydrates.

2. Have essential fats
60% of a dried brain weight is fat, it is no wonder deficiencies in specific kinds of fats can have huge repercussions on intelligence and behaviour. If you will have 3 portions of oily fish and a daily portion of seeds they should be getting a good level to help their brains develop and boost IQ.

How do I have all the essential fats they need?
- Eat plenty of seeds and nuts. You can grind and sprinkle them on cereal, soups and salads. Source of essential fats: mackerel, flax seeds , sunflower seeds, herring, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sardines, chia seeds, walnuts, anchovies, omega 3 rich eggs, tuna steak, salmon. 
- If you are not vegetarian, you can eat cold-water carnivorous fish 2 or 3 times a week. This includes sardines, mackerel, herring, kipper or wild/organic salmon.
- Choose fish oil and star flower or evening primrose oil to supplement fats
- Avoid deep fried, browned and processed foods.

3. Vitamins and minerals
Why do you need vitamins and minerals? Vitamins and minerals are the intelligent nutrients that keep the brain in tune. They are key to building and rebuilding the brain. They mainly come from fruit, vegetables and wholefoods and can be supplemented for optimum brain performance. Studies giving children supplements show improved IQ.

How do you ensure that you have enough?
-Make sure that you eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day
- Choose wholefoods, not refined foods
- Take a multi-vitamin and mineral supplements if needed.

I will promote my book here, if you want to find how the dosage change related to age, pregnancy or whatever other reason, you can check 'The complete vitamins and minerals pocket guide' on paperback, or even on Kindle.

4. Eliminate anti-nutrients and avoid food allergens
Which foods rob your brain of nutrients? Anti-nutrients are substances that knock out essential brain-friendly nutrients. Some of you develop an allergy or intolerance against particular foods.
How do I avoid anti-nutrients? Avoid or minimise:
- Refined sugar: These are essentially carbohydrates robbed of essential nutrients.
- Damaged fats: These come from fried foods and hydrogenated fats.
- Chemical food additives: Especially colourings.
Food intolerance can be detected by a pin prick blood test (speak to your GP). Alternatively you could try eliminating a food group you think you are allergic to, and reassess your mood and behaviour weekly.

That it for the today. Have a nice week!


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