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Fazer Brainhow – food for the brain

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Based on science, food affects your cognitive functions and brain well-being. With brain-friendly food choices, you can keep up the mood and make the most out of each day. But what is brain food?

Brain food is simply a combination of ingredients that are known to be beneficial for cognition and the brain. Brain food helps you stay focused and keep up your spirits. It protects the nerve cells in your brain and supports your cognitive performance.

The building blocks of brain food contain plenty of vitamins, minerals and fatty acids that have been associated with brain health and cognitive and psychological functions in scientific research. Brain food is also low in saturated fat and salt: food that is good for the heart is also good for the brain – and food that is good for the brain also supports overall well-being.

To build a brain-friendly diet, eat plenty of vegetables, fruits and berries. Enjoy fish every now and then and choose fibre-rich carbohydrates and whole grain cereals. Top your portion with seeds, nuts and vegetable oils.

Many common ingredients are also excellent brain food

  • Broccoli is high in folate that is important for normal psychological functions, e.g. attention, perception and motivation. Try broccoli as a part of your lunch to stay focused in the afternoon. 
  • Oat flakes are a good source of zinc that supports your memory and thinking. Oats also contain beta-glucan, a viscose fibre that is heart-friendly. Oatmeal is traditionally thought of as a breakfast, but it is also a good choice for an evening meal since it gives you slow-release energy for the night.
  • Dark chocolate contains magnesium that can prevent tiredness. Dark chocolate is also high in antioxidative compounds called flavanols. Cocoa flavanols have been associated with beneficial effects on blood flow. Read more about them here. 
  • Salmon contains omega-3 fatty acid DHA that helps your brain function normally. It is recommended to eat fatty fish at least twice a week. 
  • Strawberries contain plenty of vitamin C, an antioxidant that protects nerve cells in your brain. Black currant and cloudberry are also good sources of vitamin C. Add berries into your morning porridge or afternoon snack yoghurt.
  • Hazelnuts are a source of calcium that promotes the movement of nerve signals in your brain and body. Try them as a snack in the afternoon or add them to your lunch salad.

You can find more detailed information on the health benefits of these ingredients here.