Foods to Boost Memory

It is greatly overlooked how much the foods we eat on a daily basis affects our cognitive function. Living a healthy lifestyle, like improving nutrition and engaging in an active lifestyle, can increase our cognitive function and keep our brains active and functioning properly. Some group B Vitamins, such as folic acid, cyanocobalamine and pyridoxine, as well as antioxidants like vitamin C, E, and Beta Carotene are essential for correct brain function (Requejo, 2003). Likewise, being deficient in these nutrients and having a diet high in saturated fatty acids and cholesterol, has been shown to intensify cognitive decline.

Furthermore, Omega-3 fatty acids, specifically DHA, has been shown to help the brain function properly and efficiently. Studies have shown that long-term consumption of adequate DHA is linked to improved memory, improved learning ability and reduced rates of cognitive decline (Wolfram, 2017).

So what can we eat to boost memory?

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Avocados:

Not only do they taste delicious but they are high in the nutrients that are essential for healthy cognitive function. Avocados contain vitamin K and folate, as well as Vitamin B and Vitamin C. As stated above, these key nutrients are crucial in keeping he brain functioning normally. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps get rid of free radicals, while folate helps prevent blood clots.

Blueberries:

It is widely known that blueberries are high in antioxidants, like vitamin C and Vitamin K. As we know, these vitamins fight blood clots and free radicals. Similarly other dark berries, like blackberries and cherries have similar beneficial properties to boost memory function.

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Fish:

Fish such as salmon, Bluefin tuna and sardines, are high in omega-3 fatty acids and DHA. As previously stated, a diet with adequate DHA levels can help improve memory and improve cognitive function. If you are vegetarian or vegan, you can consume Omega-3 fatty acids by eating algae, ground flax seeds, walnuts or chia seeds. Our bodies will naturally convert the Omega-3 fatty acids to DHA to support our brain.

Veggies:

Many vegetables, especially cruciferous veggies, like broccoli, cabbage and dark leafy greens, help improve memory. They contain high amounts of antioxidants, vitamin K and anti-inflammatory properties to help keep your brain working efficiently.

 

 

References

Requejo, A. M., Ortega, R. M., Robles, F., Navia, B., Faci, M., & Aparicio, A. (2003). Influence of nutrition on cognitive function in a group of elderly, independently living people. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 57(S1). doi:10.1038/sj.ejcn.1601816

Wolfram, T. (n.d.). Brain Health and Fish. Retrieved April 03, 2018, from https://www.eatright.org/health/wellness/healthy-aging/brain-health-and-fish

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Bang Bang cauliflower — Everything Environmental

http://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/recipes/a57497/bang-bang-cauliflower-recipe/

via Bang Bang cauliflower — Everything Environmental

Supplements I Take Daily to Stay Fit and Healthy

  1. Multivitamin

    Multivitamins are great to take since they ensure that you get the vitamins and minerals you need to live a healthy life. It is difficult to consume all of the nutrients that are needed each day, so it is ideal to supplement it with a multivitamin.
    A variety of vitamins and minerals are needed for your body to complete each task. You lose nutrients when you sweat, stress, consume caffeine or alcohol and when you take certain prescriptions. Being deficient in a nutrient can cause many issues, like slowing down your metabolism or reducing the absorption of other nutrients that you are consuming daily.
    I usually take a chewable multivitamin, since they taste good, but there are many different kinds of multis, such as, whole food multivitamins or multivitamins that are good for genders or age groups.

  2. Vitamin D3

    Vitamin D helps with the absorption of calcium, which promotes bone growth and the maintenance of phosphorus levels. Vitamin D is absorbed through strong sunlight, so many people are deficient in this vitamin, due to the fact that we do not spend as much time in the sunlight as we should. However, it is easy to take a vitamin d3 supplement daily.
    Vitamin D has also been shown to regulate mood and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.

  3. Milk Thistle

    Milk thistle is great for detoxifying and protecting the liver. It helps remove toxins from the body and processes healthy liver function. It comes from the Asteraceae plant family, which includes plants like sunflowers and daisies. It contains antioxidants like vitamin e and vitamin c.
    It has been shown to decrease damage to the liver caused by toxins like pollution and heavy metals. I feel that it also helps prevent hang overs.

  1. Vitamin B12

    Vitamin B12 is found in foods such as meat and eggs, so since I am a vegetarian, I take this supplement daily. It has been shown to help increase mood, energy level, memory skin and digestion. It also helps with metabolic functions, like DNA synthesis and hormonal balance.

  2. Mytrition Restorative Sleep:

    I have always had trouble sleeping since I have a busy mind. This supplement contains valerian root, l-theanine, Gaba, 5HTP and Melatonin to help you unwind and promote relaxation. I have tried many different sleep supplements, like melatonin, and I feel that this helps me fall asleep faster and wake up more energetic and ready to start the day.

  3. Collagen

    I always write about how much I love supplementing collagen. It is great for the hair, nails and skin. Your collagen production depletes as you age, so it is ideal to supplement it. It helps reduce wrinkles and supports digestion.

What supplements do you take daily? 

Lovely Life

Sorry, I haven’t been writing as much as usual…

I have been in a rut lately and having a hard time getting out of it. I am struggling with money, which is affecting my social life, and ability to pay for rent, food and other necessities. The ants are already starting to infest my home, even though it is still snowing. I keep trying to stay positive throughout all of this and reminding myself that it will all get better soon.

On the bright side, I have recently gotten a promotion at work, which has helped me stay more focused and motivated. My new job entails more research, which I love. My main goal is to work in nutrition research helping low income people, but for now I am trying to enjoy my career path and see where I end up.

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I live across the street from the beach at the jersey shore, so I have been finding a lot of seaglass on my weekend runs and walks on the beach. I have decided to open an etsy account selling wire wrapped seaglass pendants. I only have a few pendants right now, but you can see my etsy store HERE

If you have any creative ideas that I can do with my seaglass, let me know!

 

National Nutrition Month

March is busy month for me, as it has both my mother’s and father’s birthdays, my boyfriend’s birthday and my sister is getting married at the end of the month. Furthermore, it is National Nutrition Month! The theme for 2018 is “Go Further With Food.” This includes reducing calories, daily exercise, making better food choices, and reducing food waste.

Reducing Calories:

Eating less can be difficult and unhealthy, so it is important to focus on keeping calories from drinks to a minimum. A Gatorade or bottle of soda not only has extra sugar, but can have as much as 150 calories per serving. Focus on fresh fruit, vegetables and lean proteins to keep you full and nutrient rich.

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Daily Exercise:

I always work out at least five to six days a week. It is part of my routine and I actually get upset when I can’t fit a workout into my day. If I know I’m going to have a busy day, I set my alarm early and get a quick run in before I start my morning. Not only is it healthy, but also it can keep you happy, help with weight loss and can increase your energy levels.

Making Better Food Choices:

Making better choices can help strengthen bones, muscles and increase nutrient intake. It is ideal to choose foods that are nutrient rich like fruits, vegetables, low fat dairy, and lean protein, while avoiding foods that are calorie dense. Making half your plate fruits and vegetables can help you eat fewer calories and fill up on nutrients. Furthermore, portion size can help decrease over eating.

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Reducing Food Waste:

40% of all food is wasted, while many people are starving across the world. Saving food is easy and can be done every day! It is ideal to save left overs, don’t over serve yourself or others, store food correctly, and keep track of what you throw away.

What are Adaptogens

Adaptogens are natural substances, like herbs, that work to regulate certain hormones and balance the body. They can help to increase the body’s resistance to physical, biological, emotional, and environmental stressors and promote normal physiologic function (Duke,1).  These herbs have been used for thousands of years for their natural health benefits, like boosting the immune system, restoring balance, managing weight, increasing physical endurance, as well as mental focus and mood.

Adaptogens grow in various environments, such as high altitude, rugged mountain regions, extreme cold, low oxygen and other stressful conditions. Many types grow in China, India, Korea, and Russia, while others are native to Europe and North America. Some are ready to harvest in a year, while others take years to mature to have the medicinal properties that they are used for.

4 Popular Adaptogens:

  1. Panax Ginseng: (AKA Asian Ginseng)
    Panax Ginseng grows in the mountainous forests of eastern Manchuria, northern China, and Korea. It is almost extinct in the wild. This type of adaptogen is used to improve calmness and memory performance. Some research states that it can help lower blood sugar levels.
  2. Astragalus:
    Astragalus is native to china and is grown in full sun and sandy soil with low nitrogen levels. It is used in Chinese medicine to decrease stress hormones and improve the stress response. It has also been shown to boost immunity. Many studies show that it can boost cortisol levels, allowing the body to respond better to types of stress. Today, it is commonly used for lack of appetite, organ prolapse, fatigue and wasting and thirsting syndrome. It is also used to enhance the immune system, preventing colds, and other illnesses.
  3. Cordyceps:
    Cordyceps is a type of fungus that grows on the Himalaya Mountains in Tibet and Bhutan. It is rare to find. They are high in antioxidants and contains immune-enhancing properties. It is now used to treat illnesses associated with the kidneys. It is also used to treat infertility in men and women, frequent urination, night sweats, dizziness and fatigue.
  4. Holy Basil:
    It is found throughout the lowlands of India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Southern China and Malaysia. It is known for its antibacterial, antidepressant, antioxidant and antiviral properties. It is also a diuretic, and galactogogue.
References
Winston, D., & Maimes, S. (2007). Adaptogens: herbs for strength, stamina, and stress relief. Rochester, VT: Healing Arts Press.

 

Moringa Cashew Dressing

Hi guys!

Today I made Moringa Cashew Dressing. It is a great alternative to processed salad dressing that you can purchase in store and you probably have many of the ingredients already in your pantry. This dressing is creamy and healthy! Not only does it have many health benefits like, anti -aging and immune boosting, but also it tastes great and brings color to your table.

This recipe is a similar to Nutrition Stripped‘s turmeric dressing recipe.

Moringa Cashew Dressing

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1/2 cup cashew butter
1 1/2 teaspoon Me Moringa Powder
3 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 garlic clove
Juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon sea salt 
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoon water (you can add more or less depending on the consistency you want)

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.