24Jul

Recipes for Boosting Brain Power

Recipes for Boosting Brain Power

Everyone has seen the lists of cognitive enhancing foods, but they’re just that — lists.

Here you will find an actual meal plan designed to improve your memory, as well as help you lose weight and build lean muscle.

You may be wondering at this point, why not just take nootropics (also known as smart drugs) to improve your cognition and be done with it?

You absolutely can. There isn’t any reason you couldn’t use supplements to acheive the results you are looking for; however, poor nutrition will yield poor results from the products you take.

You must support your body as well as your mind with proper nutrition if you want to see great results from your supplements.

Before getting to the recipes, you should understand why these foods are good for the brain.

5 Foods to Add To Your Nootropic Arsenal

  1. Coffee. So this isn’t a food, but it’s a great way to start off the day. Coffee is one of the most popular drinks in the world for multiple reasons. It boosts your energy, improves your mental acuity, and the caffeine found in coffee can also increase endurance, making it a popular addition to sports supplements. [1, 2]
  2. Berries. Berries, particularly blueberries provide excellent benefits to your brain. Berries are full of antioxidants and can help slow the rate of mental decline in regards to memory and focus. [3, 4] 
  3. Eggs. Eggs yolks are a great source of choline (a precursor to the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is responsible for learning). But don’t write off the egg whites; they’re full of protein which can help to keep you alert. Many individuals experience that drowsy 2:00pm feeling, but many of them turn to surgary energy drinks. One study by the university of cambridge suggests your brain prefers protein to sugar when it comes to staying awake. Protein is also a great way to help build lean muscle. [5, 6]
  4. Spinach. Spinach contains high concentrations of lutein, and antioxidant that protects against cognitive decline. These effects are even more pronounced in women. [7, 8]
  5. Walnuts. These are the only nuts that provide a good source of alpha linolenic acid (ALA), which improve blood flow to the brain. ALA is an essential fatty acid (EFA) and has the ability to reduce stress and anxiety. [9, 10]

Recipes That Flex the Mind and Body

Now you’ve run into the problem that all of these lists present: What do you with this knowledge? It’s not as if you can throw all of the above into a bowl and call it a meal. 

If you need meals that are quick, easy, and nutritious then look no futher. Below you will find links to breakfast, lunch, and dinner ideas as well as snack options for a complete day*.

FoodCaloriesTotal FatSodiumProtein
Blueberry Protein Smoothie172.53.7510818
Omlette199.59.3280.4526.17
2 Panini’s3501297020
Strawberries490.521
Walnuts163.516.250.53.75
Blueberries42.50.250.50.5
Stuffed Peppers2139.825463.520.75
Chicken and Spinach Quesadillas355.414.675822.2526.875
Yogurt13005012
Banana1050.411.3
Total with Stuffed Peppers142552.2751875.95103.47
Total with Quesadillas1567.457.1252234.7109.595

 

*This is based on very specific factors such as exercise, weight, and BMR. Daily caloric need will differ from person to person, so be sure to talk with your doctor about your nutrition. You may find that you need to add or remove from the above to meet your needs.

Pairing Nutrition With Workouts

Abs are made in the kitchen, as the saying goes, but you will have to put in work as well. We’ve taken improving your fitness to the next level by putting together seven week’s worth of workouts which can be found here

Sources

  1. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/humanbody/truthaboutfood/best/caffeinebrain.shtml
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2824625/
  3. http://healthland.time.com/2012/04/26/brain-food-berries-can-slow-cognitive-decline/
  4. http://www.webmd.com/add-adhd/slideshow-brain-foods-that-help-you-concentrate
  5. http://www.ars.usda.gov/SP2UserFiles/Place/12354500/Data/Choline/Choln02.pdf
  6. http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/3pm-slump-why-a-sugar-rush-may-not-be-the-answer
  7. http://www.nutraconference.com/networknow/public/SessionDetails.aspx?SessionID=1004689&FromPage=nz_ALSessionSearch.aspx
  8. http://www.shape.com/healthy-eating/diet-tips/11-best-foods-your-brain/slide/11
  9. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/29/healthy-food-healthiest-list_n_1636409.html#slide=1162293 
  10. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16491653

About Samantha Bookwalter

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Samantha Bookwalter is freelance writer and social media specialist. She specializes in web editing, copy editing, copy writing, social media management, HTML, CSS, and other web-related acronyms. Samantha has an affinity for health and fitness; in her free time she enjoys working out with her husband and researching recipes that are not only healthy but delicious too.