The Mind Diet
If Coronavirus taught us anything, it’s the significance of a healthy mind and body. We joined gyms and changed our eating habits to stay physically fit but a healthy mind is still a far cry.
Dementia has become a common disorder among old people. As we age, keeping our mind fit becomes essential too. Eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise can help you maintain good health, physically and mentally.
What is the MIND diet?
The MIND diet is worth considering if you’re looking for a diet that promotes cognitive health and overall brain function. The MIND diet is a mix of two other healthy diet plans: the Mediterranean diet, which is based on the eating routines of masses who live in Mediterranean countries and has been shown to enhance cardiovascular health, and the other diet plan is DASH, which was formulated by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to help reduce blood pressure and improve heart health.
How does the MIND diet work?
The MIND diet’s recommended guidelines emphasise plant-based foods that are minimally processed while limiting animal-based foods high in saturated fats and added sugars. The diet also suggests portion control, but unlike many other diets, it does not emphasise weight loss.
The MND diet promotes the consumption of certain foods while discouraging the consumption of others to help prevent or delay cognitive decline. It combines elements from other diets to promote healthy eating habits, which may help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
The MIND diet principles include specific food groups to consume and a few to avoid. In general, you should eat at least 3 servings of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables per day, 1 to 2 servings of beans and fish per week, and nuts and berries as daily snacks. The diet also emphasises using olive oil as a healthy source of fat when cooking.
Here is the MIND diet food list for you to follow:
● Whole grains – Whole grains are the foundation of a healthy diet. They can help you lower your risk of heart disease, manage diabetes, lose weight, and protect your brain. They also come in a variety of shapes and sizes, making them extremely versatile. Brown rice, oats, and other whole grains are high in magnesium, which aids brain cell energy utilisation.
● Leafy veggies – Kale, spinach, collards, and chard are high in antioxidants. They are an absolute necessity for brain health. Green leaves contain antioxidants such as beta carotene and folate, as well as vitamin K, which is required for the formation of brain cell membranes.
● Beans – Many beans, including chickpeas, navy beans, and pinto beans, are high in magnesium, which aids in the utilisation of energy by brain cells.
● Nuts – Almonds are high in vitamin E, an antioxidant that absorbs free radicals that damage brain cells, whereas walnuts contain anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats.
● Berries – Berries are not only delicious, but they are also high in antioxidants. Berries contain flavonoids, which strengthen neural connections and make it easier for neurons to communicate.
● Fish – Oily fish are high in omega-3 fats, which help to reduce inflammation and build the brain’s solid matter.
● Olive oil – The Mediterranean diet includes olive oil, and its health benefits extend to the brain. Olive oil contains oleocanthal, a compound that reduces inflammation.
Foods to avoid
● Butter – It’s time to put the bread roll soaked in butter down. Instead, try consuming olive oil as your main cooking fat, and dipping your bread in olive oil with savoury herbs.
● Fried foods – No matter how tasty fried foods are, limit your consumption to less than once per week.
● Cheese – Limiting your cheese consumption to less than once per week is recommended. Say adios to Mac and Cheese.
● High Sugary/ Salty Foods – Emotional eaters & stress eaters will have a hard time resisting these but ice cream, cookies, brownies, snack cakes, donuts, candy and other high sugary foods must be avoided or restricted.
Beyond a general healthy eating pattern, prioritizing these ten foods can help slash your dementia risk. Kanupriya Khanna is regarded as one of the best dietitians in Delhi because of her unwavering commitment to making a difference in people’s lives by instilling good eating habits and lifestyles.