Are you worried about your brain health? Do you suffer with forgetfulness, low mood or anxiety? Are you susceptible to mood swings or brain fog?
Mental health disorders are prevalent in our society with depression or anxiety affecting nearly 1 in 5 adults in the UK, with women more likely to report that they are suffering than men. The age group reporting the highest levels of anxiety or depression is those aged 50 – 54, but it can affect people of any age. There is much you can do to support brain function and health through your diet. Implement our suggestions below and know that you are doing your best to nourish your brain.
Your brain needs good fats to function well
60% of the brain is made from fats and we need to regularly nourish it through a good supply of monounsaturated fats. These are found in avocadoes, olives, nuts, red meat and whole milk. A deficiency of good fats can lead to depression, attention deficit, fatigue, poor memory and dementia
The brain sends signals to the body via neurons which are covered with a myelin sheath. The speed and quality of these signals relies on the condition of the myelin sheath. 80% of the myelin sheath is made of fats which are made up of high levels of Omega 3 and 6.
Omega 3 is found in good amounts in oily fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies, herring and trout), walnuts and flaxseeds (linseeds).
Omega 6 is found in good amounts in nuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, vegetables, meat and dairy produce
Phospholipids found in eggs, sardines, liver, soya beans and nuts are another major component of the myelin sheath.
Protecting the brain from the ageing process
Fats in the brain are very susceptible to oxidation which speeds up the ageing process.
A diet rich in antioxidants will help protect your brain:
- Vitamin C: high in all fruit and vegetables
- Vitamin E: avocadoes, olive oil, nuts and seeds
- Flavonoids: blueberries, green tea, rosemary, thyme, dark chocolate, grapeseeds, apples
- Selenium: Brazil nuts, tuna, oysters, sardines
Sunshine for your brain
A deficiency in Vitamin D is a risk for depression. Get your levels checked by your GP and try to get some sun exposure between the months of May and September, as this is the best source of Vitamin D. Be careful not to burn though!
If you think your employees would benefit from finding out about great brain health then contact us today to find out about lunchtime talk “Good Mood Food” which is part of our Seminar Programme. Call Emily on 07967 639347 or Lisa on 07966 478974