Although it accounts for only 2% of your total body weight, the fact remains that the brain is a food-hungry organ with ten times the appetite of other organs. In order to function, it uses up a minimum of 20% of your daily calorie in-take. In addition to calories, you should also make sure you get good nutrients for your neurons through a balanced and varied diet. To ensure your brain gets what it needs there are certain foods you should add to your diet. 1. Oily fish (mackerel, sardines salmon…) for brain maintenance More than 50% of brain mass is made up of lipids, and over 70% of these are fatty acids that belong to the well-known Omega 3 group. These fats are crucial to the production and maintenance of brain cells, preserving the fluidity of cell membrane.
They also play a part in neuron activity. Weakening brain function and memory trouble can often be traced back to a deficiency in Omega 31. Oily fish are one of the best sources of Omega 3, but if fish isn't to your taste, consider nut oils and rapeseed oil as equally rich alternatives.
2. Pulses (lentils, chick-peas...) for brain energy
The brain is said to be glucose-dependent, which means it uses only glucose to function. It consumes more than 5g an hour, but doesn’t know how to store it. It therefore has to be regularly supplied your diet via the circulatory system. It has long been proven that the most difficult task within intellectual performance, the capacity to memorise, depends on the level of glucose in the blood2.
But beware of indulging in sugary foods and confectionery; though easy to snack on, they can lead to such strong fluctuations that your system can react violently and reduce blood sugar to below its normal level. The brain cannot tolerate this and the drop in blood sugar leads to fatigue and a shorter attention span. The sugars that are said to be ‘complex’ and which have a low Glycaemic Index (GI) are therefore crucial. Pulses are rich in these ‘complex’ sugars, and their GI is...
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