by Karen Connelly
Forgetfulness and memory loss are a natural part of the aging process. Fortunately, maintaining a healthy diet can help maintain a healthy memory. Here are some foods to focus on:
· Berries and other dark-skinned fruits like plums, oranges, red grapes, and cherries are all packed with antioxidants that may help slow age-related cognitive decline.
· Leafy, dark green vegetables like kale, collard greens, spinach and broccoli are excellent sources of vitamin E and folate. These are believed to lower levels of homocysteine, an amino acid in the blood that, in high levels, can kill nerve cells in the brain.
· Fish such as salmon, mackerel, and tuna are full of omega-3 fatty acids and DHA which are important for the normal functioning of neurons in the brain that promote healthy memory.
· Sunflower seeds, avocado, and peanut butter are all high in vitamin E. This nutrient is believed to reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
· Fiber-packed whole grains lower the risk of cognitive impairment that may lead to dementias like Alzheimer’s disease. Whole grain bread, oatmeal, brown rice, and quinoa are just a few grains that are full of fiber.
· Extra virgin olive and cold-pressed coconut oils contain good cholesterol, triglycerides, and antioxidants that aide in improving brain health.
· Coffee and chocolate are stimulants that have a great impact on cognitive ability. Research shows that the caffeine and antioxidants in these two foods may help protect against age-related memory impairment.
Eating unprocessed, "clean" foods and getting regular exercise, 6-8 hours of sleep each night, and maintaining and active social life are all ways that help with the way a person consolidates memories. Pairing dietary changes with lifestyle modifications can help improve memory and fight off age-related cognitive decline.
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