Nourishing the Brain with Blueberries

With neurodegenerative diseases on the rise, more research is being conducted on what can be done to keep the brain at an optimal state of health for as long as possible. Many of us have heard of the common brain foods like salmon, dark chocolate, nuts, olive oil, and berries. However, it has been found that berries, specifically blueberries, can have quite significant healing properties. 

It has been found that the flavonoids in blueberries have the ability to fight off any negative consequences that oxidative stress may have on the brain. According to a study, blueberries can also increase brain activity, promote blood flow to the brain, and improve memory. Each one of these is noteworthy because a decrease in brain activity, blood flow, or impaired cognitive function can show up in neurodegenerative cases. Blueberries can also reduce the amount of harmful inflammation, boost the immune system, and fight against the plaque known to be present in diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. 

The best way to increase your intake of berries is to snack on them. They can be added to smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, cereal, or salads. However, capsules are a lot more concentrated and can be considerably more effective. Pure Encapsulations has a mix of curcumin and the polyphenols found in blueberries. This mixture is known to enhance mood and significantly promote mental clarity. Life Extension also carries blueberry capsules.

Although the risk of neurodegenerative diseases is on the rise, there are steps that can be taken to decrease the risk in the long-term. Factors like nutrition, sleep, and exercise play a huge role in repairing the brain and encourage crucial processes like neuroplasticity. Mindful practices like reading or meditating can help avoid the harmful effects of stress as well. 

Resources:

https://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2017/11/blueberries-enhance-brain-blood-flow/page-01

https://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2008/2/Maintaining-Youthful-Cognitive-Function-With-Blueberries/Page-01

https://www.lifeextension.com/newsletter/2017/3/trial-finds-blueberry-brain-benefit/page-01