Foods to Improve Concentration and Memory
If you suffer from brain fog, poor concentration or lack of memory at work, check out this list of foods that can help to improve your brain function, memory and concentration.
Rosemary has forever been associated with memory and remembrance. Containing carnosic acid, it protects the brain against free radical caused neurodegeneration. It is antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory and tasty as well. Studies into the use of rosemary essential oil found that people who smelt rosemary oil increased the chance of remembering to do things in the future by up to 75% compared with those who had not smelt the oil[i]. Rosemary essential oil has been found to help long-term memory and alertness.
Due to their high levels of folate and vitamin K, avocados are especially helpful in improving both memory and concentration. They also contain vitamins B and C which need to be consumed daily as they are not stored in the body. Avocados are lower in sugar than other fruits and have higher protein as well as containing ‘good’ fats.
Rich in zinc, magnesium, copper and iron micronutrients pumpkin seeds are powerful antioxidants. Zinc is essential for nerve signalling and memory, magnesium for memory and concentration, copper to help control nerve signals and iron to help prevent brain fog and impaired brain function. So why not sprinkle some seeds on your food for texture, taste and better concentration!
Mackerel, salmon, trout and sardines are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids. With 60% of the brain being made of fat and half of that being the omega-3 sort[ii], omega-3 builds brain and nerve cells, strengthens the synapses in the brain relating to memory and can slow cognitive decline so these fats are essential for memory and learning and avoiding brain fog. Omega-3 oil DHA helps to stimulate the growth of cells in the brain memory centre.[iii] It is thought that feeding children salmon may help prevent ADHD by improving their focus[iv].
Wholegrain foods or complex carbohydrates release energy slowly and therefore help to fuel the brain in a more stable way. Choose wholegrain foods such as wholemeal bread or pasta for better concentration and mental performance. Try to avoid sugary foods.
An antioxidant with polyphenols and containing the amino acid theanine which studies have shown to help improve alertness, performance, focus and memory.
Many nuts have healthy fats, vitamin E and antioxidants that contribute to brain health. Walnuts also contain omega-3 fatty acids and have been associated with increasing mental alertness and concentration. They can also help to reverse some signs of brain ageing. Some studies have shown that they can reverse some of the damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease. You only need a tablespoon of walnuts a day, which is less than a handful[v].
EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
This is a powerful antioxidant containing polyphenols. It is believed that including Extra Virgin Olive Oil in your diet can improve your memory and learning but also reverse age-related changes. Perfect to use as a salad dressing.
With its high levels of choline and vitamin K, broccoli is a wonderful food to support brain health and keep your memory sharp.
The flavonoids in dark chocolate improve blood flow to the brain. That means it can boost your attention span, memory, problem-solving skills, and reaction time. This also prevents mental decline among seniors. Dark chocolate boosts the production of endorphins, which are ‘feel good’ chemicals. They also reduce the effects of stress. [vi]
You may also find useful the Zing 365 Top Ten Foods for Healthy Brain Function. – Enjoy!
[i] Source: http://roberttisserand.com/2013/04/new-rosemary-memory-research/
[ii] Source: http://www.healthline.com/nutrition/11-brain-foods#section2
[iii] Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-21756/20-foods-to-naturally-increase-your-brain-power.html
[iv] Source: https://draxe.com/15-brain-foods-to-boost-focus-and-memory/
[v] Source: https://www.positivehealthwellness.com/diet-nutrition/10-brain-boosting-superfoods-need-add-diet/
[vi] Source: https://behealthy.today/10-brain-boosting-food/