13. Dark Chocolate and Cocoa Powder
If you are a fan of chocolate, you will be pleased to know that dark chocolate and cocoa powder are foods that may improve brain health. Enjoying a square of dark chocolate may not only sweeten your mood, but studies suggest it may also improve your memory and understanding. Tufts University reports that the flavonoids in cocoa powder may improve understanding by increasing blood flow in the brain. Therefore, sipping a cup of cocoa or adding a scoop of cocoa powder to your power smoothie may help keep your brain sharp.
12. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds contain fiber, protein, and the fatty acids that promote brain health. Walnuts are particularly high in the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). DHA may help fight inflammation and prevent degeneration of brain cells. Studies suggest that a diet containing walnuts may help prevent mental decline. Other nuts also provide protection to the brain and nervous system. In addition, seeds such as pumpkin seeds, flaxseed, and sunflower seeds can provide important brain-protective nutrients and healthy fats.
11. Leafy Greens
Kale, spinach, and other leafy greens are rich sources of antioxidants and plant polyphenols. The journal Neurology reports that consuming at least one serving of leafy greens each day may help prevent dementia and mental decline in the elderly. One serving is equal to about one cup of these leafy green veggies. Toss a handful of spinach into a blender with fresh fruit and a dollop of Greek yogurt for a morning dose of greens. Enjoy a leafy romaine lettuce salad sprinkled with blueberries and walnuts for a lunchtime brain-boosting meal.