A “brain-healthy” diet reduces risk of heart disease and diabetes and encourages blood flow to brain cells. Give your brain some TLC with foods and lifestyle habits that promote a sharp mind and a healthy body.
Be a Breakfast-Eater
Research shows breakfast eaters have better concentration levels and improved performance than breakfast skippers. Key ingredients in a brain-fueling breakfast include healthful carbohydrates from fruit, low-fat dairy or whole grains. New Quaker® Instant Oatmeal Hearty Medleys™ is a blend of four whole grains, plus real fruit and nuts. Fiber-rich oatmeal digests slowly and delivers a steady stream of glucose for a sustained brain power.
Fish for Omega-3s
Two-thirds of brain tissue is composed of essential fatty acids, like omega-3s. Protect against age-related cognitive decline with omega-3 DHA from salmon, tuna and fortified foods that promote artery elasticity and better blood flow to the brain. Dish up fatty fish like Orca Bay® All-Natural Wild Caught Keta Salmon twice a week for adequate omega-3s. These versatile and easy-to-prepare fillets can be cooked straight from the freezer. Look for Tilapia, Mahi Mahi and Flounder fillets too.
Fuel with Whole Grains
Glucose from carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy is the brain’s preferred energy source. Ronzoni® Healthy Harvest™ Pasta provides an excellent source of whole grains, plus three times the fiber of regular pasta per serving. Or try Ronzoni® Smart Taste™ Pasta as an excellent source of vitamin D and calcium. For optimal brain function the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for carbohydrates is 130 grams, equating to one cup of milk, ¾ cup cooked pasta, one apple and two slices of whole-wheat bread.
Upgrade to Unsaturated Fats
Preliminary research suggests fats containing oleic acid like nuts, flax, fatty fish, and olive oil may be contribute to long-lasting memory. Unsaturated fats are also excellent for your ticker. They keep arteries clean and blood flowing freely to your brain. Carapelli® Extra Virgin Olive Oil is an easy addition to salads, steamed vegetables and marinades in place of other vegetable oils. For baking and sautés, use the mildly flavored Extra Light variety. Eating two tablespoons of olive oil per day in place of saturated fats, like butter, margarine or shortening, may help reduce risk of heart disease.
Slenderize Your Waistline
Overweight and obesity are risk factors for type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. These conditions may increase risk of inflammation which takes its toll on brain cells over time. Keep your waistline trim with planned snacks between meals for appetite control. Dole® All Natural Fruit in Plastic Jars and Bowls are now packed in 100 percent fruit juice instead of syrup for a super snack choice. Look for Tropical Fruit, Mandarin Oranges and Sliced Peaches varieties.
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