I've been obsessing about brain health for quite some time now, but it has really been on my mind lately. My beautiful mother passed away on Valentine's Day. Although the cause of death was respiratory failure, she lived with Alzheimer's and dementia for the the last few years. Despite her dementia, she was filled with love and gratitude about everything, especially her family. She loved us all so much and left such a beautiful legacy.
My genetic deck doesn't look the best. In addition to Alzheimer's, mom was recently diagnosed with metastatic cancer, and my father died at age 44 of a massive heart attack. So I guess it's not just brain health I've been obsessing about - it's all of it. But here's what I know (thanks to Mehmet Oz...): Your genetics load the gun. Your lifestyle pulls the trigger.
Nutrition is essential for all areas of health, especially for nourishing our brains. And while brain health can be a very complicated topic, nourishing your brain doesn't have to be. It's as simple as eating real food - fresh, organic (local when available) and unprocessed. If it comes in a bag or box with a barcode with tons of ingredients you can't pronounce, it's not going to nourish your brain.
Dr. Mark Hyman, author of The Pegan Diet ( a fun twist on Paleo+vegan) advocates for using food as our "farmacy." In other words, food is medicine - powerful, delicious medicine that does not take a spoonful of sugar to make it go down. The foundation of this concept is eating the rainbow. Colorful fruits and vegetables are naturally loaded with brain-boosting phytonutrients. Throw some raspberries, blueberries and spinach in your morning smoothie; enjoy a salad made with dark leafy greens, carrots, yellow peppers and red cabbage topped with avocado and blackberries. Add a lean protein to roasted Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes for a delicious dinner... and there you are at the end of the rainbow. The pot of gold waiting for you? Your health.
I love this Rainbow Salad with Orange Vinaigrette by Savory Lotus. So many beautiful veggies for your brain to love in this recipe! Check it out and let me know what you think!
With brain boosting love and colorful veggies,