Benefits of Brain Food and Supplementation

Benefits of Brain Food and Supplementation

Brain Food
What kind of oats do you feed a billion dollar, champion racehorse? The horse is putting billions of dollars in your pockets, so the answer is simple. You give her the best darn oats you can get your hands on. The same applies to your most valuable asset, your brain.

The brain is the most powerful organ in the body, and everything you do depends on the fuel you put in it. Some people spend hours fantasizing about Professor X powers and other sci-fi skills. Who wouldn’t like to download 20 different martial arts into their brain like Neo, or grow the IQ of nine Einsteins by popping a pill or two? Yes, pretty please and thank you.

But that’s all fantasy for a reason. Brain food and supplements can’t be packed into a single pill. And yet, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how sharp your brain can get with premium nutrients. The brain food and supplements below have increased IQ’s, helped people focus more, and boosted their memory more than you may think is possible. But before you read on, there’s something important you need to understand.

The brain is similar to a muscle, in this way. Just as your muscles need exercise to grow, so does your brain. You can’t just take brain supplements and expect to turn into an overnight prodigy. It takes hard work, study and diligence to get the best results. In the same way drinking protein shakes only builds muscle if the muscles are trained, these supplements won’t help unless you use your brain and push it to its limits.

It’s vital to consume foods that replenish your brain with energy, repair damage, and maintain short and long-term memory. Eggs supply your brain with choline, an essential tool that builds brainpower. Wholegrains provide your brain with the fuel it needs to run. Without energy it will inevitably slow, and wholegrain foods such as wheat pasta, whole grain bread and wheat bran cereal replenish your brain’s energy levels.

Studies have shown that the omega 3 fats EPA and DHA keep your memory sharp. The best way to get these into your system is by taking fish oil daily, especially oil from cod, trout, and salmon. Eating fish regularly can provide the same results, while nourishing your body with lean protein as well. Antioxidants repair your brain, and in doing so, boost your short-term memory. Blueberries and Acai will work wonders on your short-term. Zinc is an oft overlooked but essential brain vitamin that can be best obtained by eating pumpkin seeds.

Preventative measures should include vitamin E, which is one of the best preventers of cognitive decline. Snack on nuts and greens to provide your body with optimal levels of vitamin E. Moving into the powerful realm of brain supplements, the best place to start is with nootropics. Nootropics are a relatively new arena of brain supplements that have only recently gained traction in the scientific community. Tread carefully here, as many supplements marketed as nootropics haven’t been thoroughly researched. The following nootropics have been approved by the FDA and numerous studies.

There are many children in the Racetam family of nootropics, but Piracetam is the most cost-efficient and popular of the group. If you’re not an egg fan, or want to make sure you get the optimal dose, choline can be bought for less than most brain supplements. ALCAR (Acetyl L-Carnitine) is used to boost focus and even confidence, but be aware that ALCAR has been reported to boost testosterone levels at doses over 1 gram per day.

Sleep plays a vital role in brainpower. Not necessarily quantity of sleep, but quality. Inositol has been shown to be a great social anxiety remedy, and it also makes for a night of gloriously deep sleep and brain cell recovery. But what good is clarity of mind and superior memory when you’re too anxious or depressed to use it? Bacopa helps boost your mood while increasing thought capability.

Gingko Biloba is one of the most effective herbs in the brain supplement world. This ancient herb has been an essential part of Chinese medicine for hundreds of years. It works both as an antioxidant and an oxygen booster, thanks to the promotion of good blood circulation in the brain.
There are many other brain foods and supplements to look into, but this collection contains some of the best brain enhancers for work and study alike.

Keep in mind that everyone’s body chemistry is different, so you may have to try a few before you find the perfect match for your unique needs. Once you find the most effective nutrients, however, your brain will reward you like the prize-winning racehorse it is, with an enhanced recall, sharper focus, longer stamina, and quicker thinking.

By Joshua Rueff

University of Maryland

Image courtesy of Young Sok YunFlickr License

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