6 Foods That Boost Brain Performance And Memory
You’re only as good as your brain health. Your life is only as good as the memories you make (and can remember). And you can only stay as driven as your ability to focus will allow. Basically…
There’s a LOT riding on your brain health. And one of the biggest mistakes I see guys make is putting off their brain health until they see signs that something’s not right. But if you want to stay on top of your game right now and as you get older, then you need to stay on top of your brain health.
That’s why I personally started looking into ways to improve my brain health early on. Because after a few head injuries from hockey and boxing, and with certain forms of brain disease in my family tree, I began to realize how important it is to be proactive about the vital “gray matter” between the ears. And I want to help you do the same.
So, real quick — think of your brain like a bank account. In order to keep it healthy and growing, you should make “deposits” into your brain health every single day…
And one of the most important “deposits” you can make is eating the right foods that support your brain performance and memory. So in today’s article I’ll give you 6 foods to do just that:
Eggs are one of the healthiest foods you can eat to support your health, hormones, and overall performance as a man. And they’re especially beneficial for boosting brain performance and memory.
The most important nutrient in eggs when it comes to brain health is choline. Choline is a proven brain-boosting compound that 92% of people are deficient in. Think of that. 92% of men are missing this key performance-nutrient. So if you can get more choline into your diet, you’ll instantly gain an edge on 92% of the population.
Why is choline so important?
Your brain converts choline into acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter that helps brain cells communicate with each other. And a study from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine shows that by improving brain cell communication, you’ll improve memory and overall cognitive function.
Other foods that are high in choline are wheat germ and organ meats like liver. If you’re like me, you probably don’t have a lot of opportunities to eat wheat germ and liver. But eggs are cheap and super convenient, which is why I prefer them over other high-choline foods.
Along with choline, eggs are also a rich source of vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid, which have been shown to reduce the risk of age-associated brain disease. And studies also show folic acid is so important, that a deficiency can cause Alzheimer’s disease.
On top of that, the saturated fats inside eggs help to boost testosterone levels. Low testosterone has been linked to fatigue, brain fog, and low energy. So by keeping your testosterone levels optimal, you’ll naturally improve brain performance.
- Fatty Fish
Fatty fish like salmon, trout, albacore tuna, and sardines are all rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which is crucial because 60% of your brain is made of fat and half of that is from omega-3s.
More specifically, it’s the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA that are critical for brain function.
Omega 3s are abundant in the cell membranes of brain cells, they help to preserve cell membrane health and help maintain quick communication between brain cells, too. (study)
Basically, you can think of omega-3s like an army of construction workers that build a wall around a city. That wall protects the brain cells from anything that may cause damage, and it’s the omega 3s that keep that wall strong.
Omega-3s are so powerful that in one study, researchers gave 485 older adults with age-associated cognitive decline either DHA or a placebo every day. And after 24 weeks the subjects given DHA performed better on memory and learning tests than the placebo group. Now…
Just to be clear, studies don’t seem to suggest that taking an omega-3 supplement does much for brain health in already healthy people. So you probably don’t have to run out and grab an omega-3 supplement. For a lot of guys, keeping your diet full of omega-rich fatty fish can go a long way.
Plus, like eggs, the healthy fats in fish can help boost testosterone levels in men. And maintaining healthy testosterone is key for keeping your energy levels up, boosting focus and improving mental drive.
Blueberries are rich in antioxidants called anthocyanins, which help to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in the brain — and by doing so, reduce the likelihood of brain aging and neurodegenerative diseases.
If you don’t know what oxidation is, I want you to picture an apple after you’ve taken a few bites out of it. After a few minutes, the once crisp, white apple begins to turn yellow-brown and soft. That’s an example of oxidation. And that’s what happens to your brain as a result of inflammation and oxidative stress. And that’s what the antioxidants in blueberries help prevent.
Some of the antioxidants in blueberries have even been shown to group up in the brain and help improve communication between brain cells.
In a 2009 study, researchers found that brain concentration improves five hours after eating blueberries. The subjects of the study were between 18 and 30 years old. Some were given a smoothie containing blueberries, and the others were given a smoothie without blueberries.
The subjects who drank the smoothie with blueberries increased brain power by 15-20%.
The researchers believe the reason is because blueberries increase oxygen to the brain and because they’re rich in antioxidants. Again, this helps to calm inflammation and oxidative stress, and improve focus.
As a side note, this goes to show that whether you’re a young guy who wants to improve his performance in the classroom or at the office, or you’re an older gentleman who’s noticed his mind isn’t as sharp as it used to be, blueberries are a great “go to” to get that extra mental boost you’re looking for.
Coffee contains hundreds of bioactive compounds that contribute to its brain health benefits.
Many of these compounds are antioxidants, which, like I mentioned above, fight oxidative stress that causes inflammation and impairs cognitive function. So by drinking coffee, you’ll get some of the brain-protecting benefits I mentioned in the section on blueberries.
But it’s not just antioxidants that make coffee a powerful brain-boosting “food.” Because the caffeine in coffee is a huge help, too.
Caffeine helps to increase alertness, improve mood, sharpen concentration… and drinking 3-4 cups a day has been linked to reduced risk of neurological diseases.
Here’s how it works:
Caffeine improves resting “brain entropy”, which is your brain’s readiness to process information and make adaptations because of that information.
So imagine yourself at a bar with your pals, and out of nowhere a guy leans back to throw a punch. How quickly you respond depends on your brain entropy.
In other words, brain entropy is how quickly your brain can go from being relaxed and in your own zone, to making a quick adjustment based on the environment around you. It’s vital to brain function, and when you have “high” brain entropy, your ability to process information moves faster. (study).
And of course, another benefit of caffeine is that it helps boost energy and keep you alert, which is naturally going to improve cognitive performance.
With that said, you may develop a tolerance to caffeine over time, which means you’ll need to consume more and more coffee to get the same brain-boosting effects. But I recommend you don’t become one of those guys who can’t live without his morning coffee or needs to crawl to the coffee pot in the middle of the day for a hit of energy.
In my opinion, there’s nothing wrong with having a few cups of coffee in the morning, but instead of depending on caffeine for energy, try to eat more of the foods in this article to get the mental boost you’re looking for in the afternoons.
- Pumpkin Seeds
Studies show pumpkin seeds are rich in antioxidants that help reduce inflammation and oxidative damage in the brain. They’re also loaded with zinc, magnesium, copper, and iron — which have been linked to everything from learning and memory, to neurological performance and clear thinking.
For example, zinc is crucial for nerve signaling. And zinc deficiency has been linked to many neurological conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and Parkinson’s disease (study, study).
Other studies show that magnesium is crucial for learning and memory. And low magnesium levels are linked to many neurological diseases as well.
Along with zinc and magnesium, your brain uses copper to help control nerve signals. When copper levels are “off”, there’s a higher risk of neurodegenerative disorders (study).
Regarding iron — an iron deficiency is often diagnosed by brain fog and impaired brain function (study).
So a handful of pumpkin seeds can be a big help to your brain health. You can even try making your own brain-boosting trail mix with pumpkin seeds, blueberries, and the next food on this list.
- 85% Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is packed with flavonoids that gather in the areas of the brain that deal with learning and memory. Researchers believe these compounds may enhance memory and also help slow down age-related mental decline.
One university-backed review found flavonoids are so powerful for brain health because of their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
For example, they found that short-term consumption of dark chocolate may improve alertness and memory. In the study they found when subjects ate dark chocolate, their memory and reaction time were better than those who consumed white chocolate (which has low flavonoid content).
A 2014 study found that among adults ages 50 to 69, those taking a cocoa supplement with a high flavonoid content for three months had better performance on memory tests than those assigned to take a low-flavonoid cocoa supplement.
Dark chocolate also increases blood flow which helps to keep brain fog away and boost mood — a hidden factor in brain performance.
Dark chocolate has also been shown to improve verbal fluency and reduce risk factors for brain disease.
So those are a few foods you can eat on a daily basis to make a “deposit” into your brain health.
But if you want an easier way to boost brain performance and memory…
You can also try Man Brain…
Which is our brain-boosting nootropic supplement that combines the best ingredients for brain performance and memory.
It’s got CDP choline, Alpha GPC, bacopa monnieri, theanine, caffeine, and blueberry anthocyanins…
Some of those ingredients are found in the foods I mentioned in today’s article.
But others like bacopa monnieri, alpha GPC, and theanine are in a league of their own. And if you want to really hit the peak of your brain performance and memory, these ingredients are non-negotiable. And you can’t get them in your diet unless you do it through supplementing with something like Man Brain.
Of all the supplements we have to support male health and performance, Man Brain is my favorite. It’s a simple, convenient way to keep me sharp day-in and day-out, and more years to come.
So give those foods a shot… and if you want to learn more about the ingredients inside Man Brain you can => check those out here.
Make these brain “deposits” daily so you stay at your best and get the most out of life.
- You’re only as good as your brain health. Special moments in your life only matter if you can remember them. That’s why it’s crucial to make deposits into your brain health and performance every day.
- Some of the best foods you can eat to support brain performance and memory are eggs, fatty fish, blueberries, coffee, pumpkin seeds, and dark chocolate.
- A daily diet with these foods can do everything from improve alertness, support your memory, improve reaction time, boost focus… they can even prevent age-related brain disease or in some cases, begin to reverse them.
- If you want an easy way to stay on top of your health, try Man Brain. It’s got all the power of the foods I mentioned and a whole lot more. It’s a simple, convenient way to keep your brain healthy.
Chad Howse, founder of MITA Nutra