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What are the best foods for the brain?

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In order to maintain a certain level of performance, the brain needs to be constantly nourished like any organ in our body. However, certain foods give it “a boost” where others protect it over time.

Foods that boost neurons

Comprising more than 80 billion neurons, the human brain is a complex organ. However, like the engine of a vehicle, it performs a vital function. Above all, the brain is constantly in demand, even during the night. In an article published on April 12, 2021 by Medisite, nutritionist Raphaël Gruman therefore evokes the need for “Peak power” to nourish the brain.

Author of the book The Mind Diet: The World’s Best Diet For The Brain (2017), Raphaël Gruman first of all evokes the foods that give a boost to the brain. These are the low glycemic index carbohydrates (or slow sugars) for a slower and more gradual rise in blood sugar, and therefore a smooth digestion. The Whole grains (rice, oats, quinoa, etc.) can play this role just like pulses.

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Still in the “boost” category, coffee and tea figure prominently. The caffeine in coffee is a psychoactive substance especially useful when planning to do a lot of intellectual work. However, beware of abuse, because its downside is unfortunately none other than its ability to hide fatigue. As for tea, it has a lesser effect compared to coffee. However, it can also be appreciated for relaxing abilities of theine.

Foods that protect the brain

In addition to foods that boost the brain, others have the function of protecting it in the long term. Let us cite in the first place oily fish, source of omega 3. By being easily incorporated into the membranes of our nerve cells, they promote good communication between neurons. According to Raphaël Gruman, sardines, anchovies and other mackerel should be favored here over larger fish, because they contain less heavy metals.

Foods rich in iron help produce red blood cells, which in turn carry oxygen. Most of the time, these are products of animal origin (red meat, black pudding, duck, crustaceans) and sometimes vegetable (lentils). Also include foods rich in antioxidants that are able to fight against free radicals, and therefore the degeneration of the brain. Red fruits, berries and other vegetables in general can perform this function.

Finally, like all organs, the brain must be well hydrated for optimal functioning. As Raphaël Gruman explains, certain studies have shown that dehydration is synonymous with a decrease in vigilance and concentration and an increase in the feeling of fatigue. When we feel thirsty following a loss of water up to 2%, our brain capacities would be reduced by 20% ! Good water-based hydration is therefore a key element for the proper functioning of the brain.


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