5 foods bad to stop feeding your brain
BlackDoctor.org | 6/27/2017, 11:07 a.m.
Did you know Blacks are almost twice as likely as Caucasians to have Alzheimer’s or another dementia? Not only that, but new survey results by the Alzheimer’s Association show just how unprepared families are to face the looming social, financial and caregiving crisis caused by Alzheimer’s disease.
If there was a way to prevent memory loss, wouldn’t you want to know?
Protecting your brain and memory can begin with the foods you eat, or don’t eat. The following five foods could mean bad news for brain function, memory recall and completing a variety of everyday tasks.
- Diet Soda
It’s no secret that diet soda is bad for your figure. But, did you know that ingredients used to concoct your favorite fruity soda wreak havoc on brain function. In fact, there’s good reason that both Europe and Japan have already banned brominated vegetable oil (BVO) from their bubbly beverages. Originally created to make plastics flame-retardant, BVO has since been used to keep flavoring fizzy drinks from separating from the rest of the beverage. While small levels aren’t harmful on their own, over time, it can build up in our systems, causing memory loss and nerve disorders.
Per new research, using data from the Framingham Heart Study (FHS) findings indicate that people who indulge in excess sugar—especially the fructose in sugary drinks—are frequently more likely to have poorer memory, smaller overall brain volume, and a significantly smaller hippocampus—an area of the brain important for learning and memory.
- Fast Food
It’s no secret, that foods that are high in fat cause fatigue, making your brain feel sluggish. While chips, ice cream, and cookies are all bad fat-offenders, some fast food options are a powerhouse of ingredients bad for your brain, including trans fat, saturated fat, sodium, sugar, fillers and artificial flavorings.
According to research, the average American chows down on 79 pounds of added sweeteners every year. That’s more than one fifth of a 1,800-calories-a-day diet—along with 63 pounds of fat – all wreaking havoc on brain chemistry in a matter of weeks, Women’s Health says.
- Ice Cream
One bedtime bowl of vanilla ice cream can add up to 10 grams of artery-clogging saturated fat and nearly 28 grams of refined sugar. Multiple studies have shown that saturated fat and sugar-rich diets can diminish cognitive skills and memory recall.
- Movie Butter Popcorn
While plain air-popped popcorn has been touted as a healthy go-to snack due to its filling fiber and whole grains, microwaveable movie butter-flavored varieties are a no-go for brain health. In fact, popular brands like the affordable Jolly Time or Jiffy Pop contain harmful trans fats and diacetyl (DA), a chemical that’s believed to break down the layer of cells that protects one of the body’s most vital organs—the brain.
Further findings, published in PLoS One, found that consuming more trans fat was linked to difficulty remembering words.
While the American Heart Association recommends eating fatty fish like tuna at least twice a week, eating more than the recommendation could mean bad news for both your brain and heart. Why? Tuna such as bigeye, ahi, albacore and yellowfin are high in mercury and chomping down on too much could result in a dip in cognitive function, a University of South Florida study found.
Instead, opt for fish like mackerel, halibut, sardines, wild salmon, trout, even spiny lobster– all which offer brain-boosting benefits with potentially less risk of consuming excess heavy metals.