Click above to watch my VLOG – How to Eat Smart to Stay Sharp. Or, feel free to read the transcript below instead!
Note: The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate. This is due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
The subject of our VLOG today is How to Eat Smart to Stay Sharp. It’s really important now more than ever, that we really work to protect our brain and our cognitive functioning. This is because the world is unfortunately becoming more and more filled with chemicals and different compounds which disrupt our natural biology and our natural rhythms.
These, in turn, can bio-accumulate in our brain and create all sorts of degenerative neurocognitive functioning, including with the diseases of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
It’s really important that all of us are working to eat smarter and working to protect our brains. Now our brains are actually really dynamic. There’s a term called neuroplasticity, and this relates to how our brain can actually rewire itself and create new neural pathways.
This is something that the great Yogi Paramahansa Yogananda was talking about decades before scientists were actually talking about it.
Science and Philosophy Around the Brain
It’s really interesting when we’re talking about the brain, it’s related even in yogic, vedic science and philosophy around working with the brain to produce really high states of focus, meditation, and clarity. These are along the same lines.
This is sort of what’s being studied today in western science, and there’s this beautiful integration between the east and west and knowing how powerful our brains are. Even though we don’t understand everything that goes on with our brains, it is one of the mysteries of science because our brains are so complex.
We know that our brains are constantly evolving and the nutrients that we eat each and every day, each and every week can work to support our brains.
How Our Brains Are Energy Intensive
Our brains are extremely energy intensive. They take about 20% of our total body’s energy. The calories that we take in are utilized by our brains because we are thinking all the time.
Our brains are the center for everything that is happening throughout all the different systems of our body. It’s critical to understand and respect that our brain is extremely energy intensive and its maintenance is important.
How to Eat Smart
There are certain nutrients that we really need to maintain the health of our brain. The first is omega-3 fats. This is an important consideration when we’re looking at our diet to make sure that we are including enough sources of omega-3 fats.
Here in Solluna we are plant based and we promote a largely plant based diet. It’s not all or nothing but especially with the toxicity concerns in waterways today. I personally am not an advocate for consuming fish.
I think that eating fish can be very dangerous, what with the PCBs and the mercury present in fish, which we then ingest in our system. And again, there’s so much toxicity all around that we want to reduce toxicity where we can.
We want to not necessarily source omega-3s from fish but from flax seeds and chia seeds. You can also take an algae based DHA EPA supplement just to make sure you’re getting this nourishing omega-3 fats. This is really important for our brain health overall and that can help protect us against Alzheimer’s and some of the degenerative diseases.
All our Solluna/Beauty Detox recipes are very nutrient dense, and very green veggie friendly. You’re going to get vitamins that are important for your brain health, such as vitamin K and folate, beta carotene and lutein. This is why you want to make sure that you are getting a lot of leafy greens.
Another green that’s important, that’s not necessarily leafy, but super, super nourishing is broccoli. Broccoli contains compounds called, glucosinolates.
This compound in broccoli helps to reduce oxidative stress. It can help protect your brain, so broccoli in all its forms, broccoli soup, steamed broccoli, even some raw broccoli in salad. I personally don’t love raw broccoli. I liked steamed or roasted broccoli, but however you want to get your broccoli in, it’s a great thing to keep in your regular rotation for brain health.
Berries are fantastic and luckily we are coming into berry season now. There is a 2012 study published out of Harvard that found that women that consumed two or more servings of strawberries and blueberries each week delayed memory decline by up to two and a half years.
Source your strawberries and blueberries fresh when you can! Bubby and I just went strawberry picking a couple of weeks ago. It was amazing. And these wonderful berries are wonderful for your brain health.
Raw Soaked Nuts
I also want to talk about nuts, especially nuts including walnuts and almonds, which are rich in protein and healthy fats. There was a study supported by Loma Linda University linking brain health, cognitive test stores with walnut consumption, and that it’s a great source of omega-3 fats.
Walnut pate is a wonderful thing or add walnuts to your salad or just snack on walnuts. It’s a wonderful food for hiking, for energy, and for cognition and brain health.
Finally, I will talk about one of my favorite foods, which is cacao. Dark chocolate has wonderful flavonoid antioxidants which are protective of your brain, which is particularly susceptible to oxidative stress.
There is a 2013 review showing that cacao flavonoids helped to encourage neuron and blood vessel growth in parts of the brain involved in memory and learning.
Eat your chocolate as well for brain health. I have chocolate all the time. There’s some chocolate on my desk right now, as a matter of fact! Just having a little nib often helps me get over my sweet cravings and it tastes nice and it’s energizing. It also feels relaxing to me and now we know it’s also good for brain health.
Supporting Local with THIS Initiative
I want to remind you, Beauty, if you haven’t yet gotten your copy of Recipes for Your Perfectly Imperfect Life, now is a perfect time to do so!! We are reintroducing for summer five of our bonuses that are all about overcoming body shame and feeling good in your perfectly imperfect body now, including 22 short videos.
These bonuses are all about how to support feeling good right now in your perfectly imperfect body including 22 short videos which are very direct and very practical.
All you have to do is purchase your copy of the new book at Barnes & Noble or your favorite local retailer up until June 21st, so you have a couple of more days!! Take advantage while you can. We are all about supporting local with this initiative.
Remember that the way we eat is very important to help protect the brain and the health of our brain. Especially in the world we live in today, with all the stress that’s coming at our bodies.
We want to stay healthy and resilient. Our diet and all the healing plant intelligence, which comes from these amazing foods from nature, can really help to keep us naturally healthy.
Sending you lots of love, Beauty. Thank you so much for tuning in from the bottom of my heart. I will see you back here soon. Remember to check out our other offerings, including our feel good podcast and our Instagram handle @_kimberlysnyder.