By: The Dr. Perlmutter Team
As I’ve stated before, one of the most fascinating things about the human brain is that neuroplasticity, the process by which the brain undergoes changes in response to internal and external stimuli, affords us a great deal of control in determining the overall health of our brain. While there are many lifestyle changes one can make to improve overall brain health, studies have shown that dietary factors can have a significant impact. Choosing which foods you use to fuel your body goes far beyond counting calories; the macronutrients—fats, proteins, and carbohydrates—you emphasize in shaping your diet can have major repercussions for brain health. There is evidence to suggest that individuals who consume a diet high in carbohydrates have an 89% increased risk of developing dementia, while people who consume a diet high in healthy fats actually reduce their risk by 44%. Ensuring that the foods you consume are high in antioxidants, rich in healthy fats, low in carbohydrates, and powerfully anti-inflammatory can go a long way towards optimizing brain health and boosting memory and cognition.
Foods to Improve Brain Health and Memory
Generally speaking, I recommend a diet that is higher in fat and fiber, low in carbs, and rich in gut-healthy probiotics. To that end, please read on for some suggestions on specific foods around which to build a brain-boosting diet!
Food allergies, and a specific skin condition called eczema, are rapidly increasing in the youth population. Now, in what may be the largest study of its kind ever performed, researchers are studying a woman’s diet during pregnancy, as well as duration of breast-feeding post-birth, to assess a child’s susceptibility to allergies, as well as risk for conditions like eczema and autoimmune disorders. British investigators, evaluating over 1.5 million people, have come up with some very compelling information.
The research is what’s called a meta-analysis, meaning that it is review of previous studies (over 400 in this case) involving over 1.5 million people, and dating as far back as 1946. The researchers discovered that there was a weak, but nonetheless demonstrable, relationship between breast-feeding and reduced risk of eczema during infancy, as well as reduced risk for type I diabetes. In addition, probiotics seemed to reduce the risk of allergic reactions to cow’s milk.
The data, however, was much more supportive of the relationship between taking a probiotic supplement while 36 – 38 weeks pregnant, and during the first 3 to 6 months of breast-feeding, and risk for childhood eczema. In fact, in those women taking probiotics, risk for eczema in their child was reduced by 22%. The scientist noted that most of the probiotics contained a bacterium called Lactobacillus rhamnosus. Continue reading
Like most Americans, you probably start your day with breakfast. While I often opt to skip breakfast (and instead just enjoy my cup of black coffee), there’s nothing wrong with the choice to start your day with a healthy meal. However, the key is that it’s just that: a healthy meal. In today’s video, discover the cornerstones of a brain-boosting breakfast that will keep your body operating at peak efficiency throughout the day.
For some breakfast ideas, check out the recipes we have here on the website!
I don’t think there’s any more controversial food than eggs. By and large, the reason we have been told to avoid eating eggs is because they contain cholesterol, and indeed that’s true. A typical egg may contain as much as 200 mg of cholesterol. But does that mean we shouldn’t eat eggs?
To answer this question, researchers in Finland conducted an extensive study in which they evaluated two parameters. First they looked at whether or not individuals developed coronary artery disease. In addition, they looked at a parameter called carotid intimal thickening. Basically this is a study, using ultrasound, that looks at the thickness of the lining of the carotid artery. The reason this is used is because it is a strong indicator of coronary artery disease if in fact there is thickening.
Go to the mall. See a movie. Look around next time you’re in an airport. What you’ll see is the confirmation of all the statistics that we’re hearing so much about these days related to the ever-increasing prevalence of obesity. It’s everywhere and it’s affecting most of us.
Books, online information, infomercials, daytime T.V., and even nightly news programs are constantly hammering us with the scary news that relates increasing abdominal girth to just about every bad medical condition you don’t want to get. At the same time, these same resources offer up some new trendy solution to the obesity epidemic daily, often in the form of some new and exotic dietary supplement.
Truth is, losing weight doesn’t happen when you give in and buy the latest pill. Weight loss happens when the body shifts from storing fat to burning fat. It is that simple, and far and away how we signal our metabolism to make this fundamental shift depends on what we choose to eat. Continue reading
Remember when back in the day we were told that the food we definitely don’t want to eat is eggs? Because if you eat eggs all kinds of terrible things will happen to you. But we now understand that there is a robust level of science that really shows us that eggs are actually a good food. Let’s take a look at one report that really illustrates this.
From omelets to avocados, a Grain Brain lifestyle is filled with many different healthful, and delicious, breakfast options. One item that many individuals like to keep on the table though, is oatmeal. However, this study, from the New England Journal of Medicine, provides some evidence that suggests that might not be the best idea.