Avocado, kale, spinach, eggs: we love these flat-belly foods for their ability to help you shed those unwanted pounds. Not only can these superfoods help you achieve your weight-loss goals, but they also happen to be good for your brain, too.
Researchers at the University of Illinois found that lutein-rich foods, such as eggs, leafy greens, broccoli, zucchini, and Brussels sprouts, can keep your brain sharp. Lutein, which is a nutrient found in plants, has been found to reduce the risk of eye problems such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. Now, a new study has shown lutein can help slow the aging of the brain.
The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Aging and Neuroscience, looked at a group of 60 adults ranging in age from 25 to 45. Other studies had looked at older adults, who have already experienced mental decline, but this study chose to examine younger adults to see if there was any correlation between levels of lutein and cognitive health. Researchers found that those who had higher levels of lutein in their body had stronger neural responses, which was more similar to younger brains than their peers.
“Lutein appears to have some protective role, since the data suggest that those with more lutein were able to engage more cognitive resources to complete the task.” Anne Walk, postdoctoral research associate and author of the study paper, says, according to Science Daily.
Lutein is a nutrient that the body cannot naturally produce so you have to have to get it through diet. Luckily, lutein-rich foods are also some of the 40 Best-Ever Fat-Burning Foods, so you’ll be feeding your body something healthy as well as your mind.
Eat This! Tip:
Try adding more lutein-rich foods into your diet: opt for avocado toast and an egg for breakfast, nosh on a spinach and kale salad for lunch, or roast up some Brussels sprouts for dinner. Not only will leafy greens give you some much-needed vitamins, they’ll also help protect your mind. For more ways to feed your noggin, check out the 22 Best & Worst Foods for Your Brain.