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  • Writer's pictureBrian Dooreck MD

Nutrition and Memory 🧠

Updated: Jul 24, 2023


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Studies have shown that we can reduce the possibility of dementia by avoiding foods that can compromise our gut bacteria and weaken our memory and focus. Harvard Medical School reported that gut bacteria can trigger metabolic processes and brain inflammation that impact memory.


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Foods that must be avoided to fight inflammation and promote brain health.


  • Alcohol

  • Nitrates

  • Fried Foods

  • Sugars

  • Carbohydrates


Does a high-sugar diet lead to excess glucose in the brain?


Our brain utilizes energy in the form of glucose to function. High-sugar diets can lead to excess glucose in the brain—foods such as baked goods, high-fructose syrup, and sodas. Glucose excess in the brain increases the risk of depression, anxiety, learning, and memory.


Does high consumption of fried foods affect memory?


Reducing the number of fried foods you eat is critical for brain health. High consumption of fried foods causes inflammation and can damage the blood vessels that supply the brain with blood. Fried foods that are high in cholesterol may be linked to the development of Alzheimer's disease.


How do carbohydrates affect the gut?


High-carbohydrate foods like bread, pasta, and refined flour are processed like sugars. Eliminating carbohydrates from your diet is not the goal; select good quality carbs such as whole grain foods and foods with high fiber. Fiber ranked low on the glycemic index (GI). The GI measures how quickly foods convert to glucose when digestion breaks down—high consumption of unhealthy carbohydrates such as potatoes, white bread, and white rice.


According to a study conducted in 2018 researchers discovered that people who had the highest score on the carbohydrate-quality index, meaning they were eating better-quality carbs, were 30% less likely to develop depression than those who were eating high-GI carbs.
Fiber ranked low on the glycemic index (GI).

The role that Nitrate plays in the gut and mental health


Nitrates are said to be connected with depression; nitrates also alter gut bacteria which is associated with bipolar disorder.


According to the National Institute Of Health nutrition indicates both beneficial and deleterious effects on cognitive aging and brain health.

An unhealthy diet rich in fats and sugars causes inflammation of neurons and inhibits the formation of new neurons.


Below is an educational video on how nutrition plays an important role.



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Fun Facts


High glycemic index foods


  • Potatoes

  • White bread

  • White rice


Medium glycemic index foods


  • Honey

  • Orange juice

  • Whole-meal bread


Low glycemic index foods


  • Green vegetables

  • Fruits

  • Raw carrots

  • Kidney beans

  • Chickpeas and lentils


Statistics


High-sugar diets are also connected with memory loss, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and brain fog.


Research in the Alzheimer’s & Dementia Journal suggests a MIND diet for your brain. The MIND diet — whole grains, lean fish, chicken, vegetables, olive oil, nuts, berries, beans, leafy greens, and wine — borrows from the Mediterranean diet and the Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension Diet (DASH).


These targeted foods lowered participants’ risk for Alzheimer’s by up to 53% when included in regular meal plans.


Summary


There is no magic formula for long-term, sustainable weight loss.


Balance. Portion control. Keep nutrition simple. Eat Smart. Eat Healthily. 🌱 🌾 🌿


Personally


I eat a high-fiber, mostly plant-based 🌱 diet, no red meat, drink 4 liters of water a day, exercise, and am focused on keeping nutrition simple. I am sharing what works for me and what I routinely recommend to my patients.


"Balance. Portion control. Keep nutrition simple. Eat Smart. Eat Healthy. 🌱 🌾 🌿"

Gut Health ➕ Patient Advocacy with Navigation ➕ Life Balance


If you were looking for information about Private Healthcare Navigation and Patient Advocacy from Executive Health Navigation


Connect with Dr. Dooreck on LinkedIn, where he focuses his sharing on Health, Diet, Nutrition, Exercise, Lifestyle, and Balance.


 

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