The pandemic, which caused radical changes in our daily life habits, also affected our eating habits. The uncertainty we experienced and the shelving of social activities caused an increase in forgetfulness along with sensory eating problems.
Acıbadem International Hospital Nutrition and Diet Specialist Elif Gizem Arıburnu stated that during the pandemic process, especially the tendency to foods with high fat and added sugar content increased, “Studies have shown that people who eat this type of diet get worse scores on memory tests compared to people who eat a Mediterranean diet and the memory region of the brain is called. shows that it causes dysfunction of the hippocampus region. The reduction in fat intake and almost no use of added sugar in a healthy diet helps to reduce inflammation in our body, improve vitamin and mineral imbalances, and make our brain functions more functional by lowering cholesterol. " says. Healthy eating is very effective in strengthening memory; He emphasizes that especially vitamins B12, B6, B3 and B9 (folate) and magnesium, zinc, copper, iron, iodine, selenium and potassium minerals regulate nerve conduction and play an important role in brain functions. Nutrition and Diet Specialist Elif Gizem Arıburnu talked about 9 memory-enhancing nutritional suggestions against increasing forgetfulness in the pandemic, and made important warnings and suggestions.
Do not consume foods containing added sugar
Studies have shown that people who consume large amounts of sugar and added sugar-containing foods in their routine life have poorer memory and lower brain volume compared to those who do not. Therefore, reducing sugar and sugary foods and meeting sugar needs from fruits, if possible, is the best benefit you can do for your brain health. Both reducing sugar not only helps your memory but also improves your overall health.
Consume fatty fish two days a week
While about 60 percent of our brain is made up of fat, fatty fish are also very important for our brain health. Studies have shown that the consumption of fatty fish such as salmon, sardines and tuna in the form of grill or oven contributes to the increase of nerves in the brain that facilitate decision-making, strengthen memory and control emotion. At the same time, consuming enough fish contributes to the protection from Alzheimer's disease and depression. On pandemic days full of uncertainty, we can also improve our mood by only consuming fish twice a week.
Add turmeric to your daily diet
Turmeric is a powerful antioxidant and helps maintain health by acting as an anti-inflammatory in the body. Recent studies; Turmeric has been found to prevent damage to the brain and the formation of amyloid plaques in the nerve endings of neurons, causing cell death. You can easily add it to your diet with your eggs in the morning, into yogurt for snacks, and mixed spices in meat dishes.
Consume raw nuts
Thanks to the vitamin E contained in raw nuts such as hazelnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, walnuts and peanuts, brain cells; It has been observed that they protect from oxidative stress caused by free radicals and have the potential to prevent / slow down cognitive decline in later ages. In moderation, you can consume a handful of raw nuts a day.
Eat an egg every day
Nutrition and Diet Specialist Elif Gizem Arıburnu “When you eat 1 egg every morning for breakfast; While taking B-6, B12 vitamins, important nutrients such as folic acid and choline; In this way, you can prevent the brain from shrinking while delaying age-related cognitive decline. Choline contained in egg yolk is an important micronutrient in our body's mood and memory regulation. says.
Cut down on refined carbohydrates
With the Pandemic, we are trying new recipes in the kitchen and these recipes are mostly cakes, cookies, pastries and bread. While we are making these, we mostly use white flour, which raises the glycemic index of such foods. In other words, the body digests these carbohydrates quickly, causing a sudden increase in blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that the Western diet high in refined carbohydrates is associated with dementia, cognitive decline, and decreased cognitive function.
Stay away from alcohol
Repetitive excessive alcohol consumption can cause neurotoxic effects on the brain, damaging the hippocampus of our brain, which plays a role in memory management. When the hippocampus area was damaged, it was observed that the durations were prolonged in the sudden and delayed memory recall tests.
Your chocolate preference is dark
Cocoa helps improve our memory performance by stimulating the growth of neurons and increasing blood flow to the memory regions of the brain, thanks to the flavonoids it contains. When we need dessert, our first priority may be to mix a fruit such as banana or dried dates with cocoa. However, even if we want to eat chocolate, it would be healthier to choose at least 70 percent dark chocolate.
Increase your fiber intake
Fiber is important for brain health because it helps feed the gut bacteria that support brain growth. Prebiotic fibers allow good bacteria to grow and thrive in our digestive system. Prebiotic foods include bananas, tomatoes, onions and lentils. Eating prebiotic foods is also known to contribute to mental health by reducing depression, stress and anxiety.