They’re colorful, sweet, and they’re essential for brain health. Berries are chock full of antioxidant compounds that protect the brain from age-related deterioration. Up until now, scientists haven’t been sure exactly how berries exert their magic on the brain, but a recent study shed some light on this issue.
Eating Berries for Brain Health
It doesn’t seem to matter what berries you choose, red, blue, or purple, they’re all rich in antioxidants. For brain health, most research has focused on the blueberry – but strawberries, raspberries, and acai berries have health benefits too. Unfortunately, most people don’t get enough of these berries in their diet. This is unfortunate since there’s more evidence emerging daily that eating berries is good for brain health.
Who Does Eating Berries Protect the Brain?
In a study presented at the National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, scientists described a study that shows how berries protect the aging brain. When they gave aging laboratory mice an extract made from a variety of berries including strawberries, blackberries, and blueberries for two months, the mice showed repair of some of their age-related brain and nerve damage.
Why did this happen? Berries are a good source of antioxidant compounds and compounds such as polyphenolics that block inflammation and protect against cell damage. Scientists believe these polyphenolics restore the brain’s ability to clean up cell debris produced as the brain ages, so it doesn’t interfere with normal brain and nerve function. In a sense, the polyphenolics in berries carry out a “clean up” job that allows the brain to function better.
Is Eating Berries Important for Brain Health?
Evidence is accumulating that eating berries helps to protect the brain from aging. The key is to eat enough berries, which most people don’t. Even when berries aren’t in season, you can buy frozen blueberries or mixed berries at most grocery stores. Use them to make tasty, all-natural smoothies by adding low-fat yogurt and ice along with the berries to a blender – or spoon them into a cup of yogurt. Sprinkle some on cereal or oatmeal in the morning for added antioxidant power. Mix them into salads and use frozen berries in place of ice cubes to keep a drink cold. Get creative with these sweet, colorful orbs!
Eating Berries for Brain Health: The Bottom Line?
Enjoy the many health benefits that berries have to offer – and keep your brain healthy at the same time ‘” naturally.
Eurek Alert. “Eating berries may activate the brain’s natural housekeeper for healthy aging”