Alzheimer’s experts have been exploring the role diet plays in the development of the disease for many years. As clinical trials have evolved, more and more researchers are sharing what they believe are the foods that can help you prevent or delay Alzheimer’s disease and those they feel contribute to it.
Inflammation-friendly Food Choices
Experts tell us that foods that contribute to inflammation also promote the development of plaques in the brain. These plaques are linked to Alzheimer’s disease.
Their recommendations on the foods that you should avoid or consume only in moderation are:
- White bread and foods with a high concentration of white flour
- White rice and white flour pasta
- Processed meats and cheeses
- Cakes and other treats made with white sugar
- Beer, margarine, microwave popcorn and other foods containing nitrates or diacetyl
Some Alzheimer’s experts take this debate even further believing that carbs of any kind contribute to inflammation. They also suggest avoiding foods that contain whole grains. These foods can cause blood sugar to spike. The highs and lows in blood sugar that are a result of those spikes have been linked to inflammation.
Brain Boosting Foods
On the opposite end of the food pyramid are foods that contain healthy fats, lean proteins, vitamins, and minerals. These can help to keep your brain fit. They include:
- Leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale, radishes, broccoli, and romaine
- Cold water fish that contain high concentrations of healthy fats such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines
- Inflammation-fighting fruits that are blue, purple or red such as plums, blueberries, blackberries, and apples
- Foods rich in Flavonols including coffee and dark chocolate
- Foods cooked in extra-virgin olive oil or cold-pressed coconut oil
- Flax seed that is easy to add to smoothies or hot cereals
- Walnuts, almonds, pistachios, and peanuts
This infographic can be a great visual aid to remembering what foods are good for your brain and which ones you might want to avoid.