A healthy brain is essential for living a long and meaningful life. Healthy life means nothing without a healthy brain. Our lifestyle, Physical activities and the food habits play an important role in our brain health and memory.
An active brain is a sharp brain and performs at maximum levels. Like other organs brain also needs to be stimulated. Different activities for stimulating the brain can be activities such as learning something new, increasing social activities and solving puzzles.
Sleep is also very crucial for brain health. A good night’s sleep is very important for strong brain function.
Healthy Brain and Heart
Here are certain points for good heart and brain health as recommended by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Control your blood pressure. High blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease and stroke. Over time, high blood pressure puts too much stress on blood vessels. Uncontrolled high blood pressure in midlife also raises your risk for dementia later in life.
- Eat healthy foods and limit alcohol. Eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and low-fat dairy, and include seafood rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Limit foods with added sugars and saturated fats and lower salt intake. Drinking too much alcohol raises blood pressure, which can lead to stroke and increase the risk of some kinds of heart disease.
- Get diabetes under control. Diabetes causes high blood sugar, which can damage blood vessels and nerves. This damage raises the risk for heart disease, stroke, and dementia.
- Don’t smoke. Smoking damages blood vessels and makes blood more likely to clot, which can lead to heart disease and stroke.
- Stay active. Lack of physical activity can lead to high blood pressure and obesity.
We should consume food that is beneficial to our heart and mind. Food we eat does influence our health system including blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Here are some foods that are recommended for good heart and brain health.
Blueberries: Blueberries help protect the brain from oxidative stress and are supposed to help in reducing the effects of age-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.
Omega-3 rich food: Omega-3 are essential fatty acids which are essential for the health of the brain. Some fish like Salmon are rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. Flax seeds, avocados and walnuts are other source of omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamin E.
Whole grains: Whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole-grain breads, and brown rice can reduce the risk for heart disease.
Pomegranate: Pomegranate offers potent antioxidant benefits, which protect the brain from the damage of free radicals Because pomegranate juice has added sugar
Leafy Vegetables. Leafy vegetables like Spinach, Kohlrabi are rich in magnesium, which help dilate blood vessels, and boost blood flow to the brain.
Green tea. Green tea has potent antioxidants which promote brain health. Two to three cups a day of freshly brewed tea can boost brain power by enhancing memory, focus, and mood.
Ayurveda for Brain Health:
Ayurveda, a natural system of medicine, originated in India. The term Ayurveda is derived from the Sanskrit words ayur meaning life and veda science or knowledge.
Ayurveda recommends the use of some natural herbs for brain health. Here are certain herbs prescribed in Ayurveda for brain health as recommended by Kerala Ayurveda the well known Ayurvedic institution and practitioners:
Ashwagandha is quite useful in reducing stress levels. It rejuvenates the mind and body. It helps in strengthening our nervous system thereby helping a healthy brain and memory. Ashwagandha besides reducing stress levels it improves vigor. It also boosts the memory power and intensifies the brain and its fretfulness.
This is a common herb recommended for memory enhancement. It helps in strengthening the nervous system and helps in enhancing brainpower. This helps in improving memory. It also helps improve concentration and intelligence and is thus recommended for students
is another potent herb used in Ayurveda to help improve memory and brain health. It has a helpful calming effect on the mind and helps reducing stress levels. It helps ensure a good sleep, which aids good memory.
is a well-known herb that helps maintain brain health. Vacha is another memory enhancer, that is used to improve brain performance. It is one of the well-known and helpful Ayurvedic herbs used to make memory booster supplements.
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention: Brain Health Is Connected to Heart Health | cdc.gov
Harvard Health Publishing (Harvard Medical School): Foods linked to better brainpower – Harvard Health