Eat for brain health with Lola García
The nutritional expert at SHA Wellness Clinic, Lola García, shares her nutritional expertise to keep our brain healthy!
The fast-paced and stressful lives we live tend to have an affect on our mental state, making it difficult to concentrate and think with clarity. Nowadays, there’s a term used to describe this state, known as brain fog.
Brain fog can be caused by lifestyle choices, and/or, secondary effects to medications, but generally speaking, it can be summed up as an inflammatory condition in the body.
There are 2 measures that are under our control that we can adopt to revert the situation. The first one is to avoid the foods and patterns that cause brain fog, and on the other hand, include foods that are going to strengthen our organism and reduce inflammation.
What foods should we avoid?
The foods we should avoid are refined sugars (table sugar, aspartame, sucrose, saccharin, etc.) and artificial ingredients found in processed foods such as colorants, conservatives and taste enhancers (glutamate).
Another aspect we should consider when boosting brain health, is hydration. More than 70% of our brain is made up of water, therefore, it’s important to consume plenty of liquids, whether it’s by drinking water or including soups, herbal teas, fruits or vegetables in the diet.
What foods combat brain fog?
We recommend eating a diet based on real food, such as vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds and algae.
In recent years, the link between gut and brain health has become an area of interest in medical science, proving that our gut flora affects our immunity, mental health, mood and energy levels. In fact, 20% of our neurons are found in the gut. To keep the gut microbiome in check, we need to consume fermented foods, such as miso, sauerkraut, kimchee, tempeh and apple cider vinegar. From a nutritional and healing standpoint, we highly recommend miso soup, as its rich in enzymes, proteins, vitamins and minerals, helping detox the organism, improve digestion and the absorption of nutrients.
One of the most important vitamins to maintain the nervous system in shape is the vitamin B group. Consuming whole grains is essential, as they are rich in vitamin B. The daily recommended intake should be 20-40% of your diet.
Like we mentioned, sea vegetables are very rich in minerals, therefore, we should include a small amount of them in our diet every day, whether it’s in salads, soups or snacking on toasted nori.
Lastly, we must not forget to include leafy greens in our diet. We should aim to include them in all our meals, as they provide one of the best anti-inflammatories, chlorophyll. Including anti-inflammatory foods will keep our organism healthy, as well as avoid brain fog and developing illnesses.