BlueberriesSubbotina Anna/Shutterstock This tiny but powerful berry helps protect the brain from oxidative stress and may reduce the effects of dementia. In a recent study, researchers gave a group of adults with mild cognitive impairment, a risk condition for Alzheimer's, freeze-dried blueberry powder daily, while another group took a placebo. After 16 weeks, those who ate the blueberry powder (the equivalent of one cup of berries) had improved memory, better cognitive performance, and increased brain activity. Your everyday habits may also reduce your risk of Alzheimer's.
CoffeeIlja Generalov/Shutterstock A cup of coffee before a big exam can help your brain perform at its best. That’s because caffeine improves short-term memory and speeds up reaction times. Researchers from the National Institute on Aging found that individuals who drank more caffeine had better scores on memory tests, which explains why has been linked to a lowered risk of Alzheimer’s disease. It can also help prevent Parkinson's disease and relieve headache pain. But don’t overdo it—too much caffeine can make you jumpy or irritable. Look out for the signs that you're drinking too much coffee.
Nuts and seedsyesyesterday/Shutterstock Nuts and seeds are terrific sources of vitamin E, which can help prevent cognitive decline as you age. Other vitamin E-rich foods include eggs and cooked veggies. And it’s not just your brain that benefits from nuts; your heart will be happier too. Almonds, walnuts, cashews, Brazil nuts, pistachios, and peanuts have been linked to a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease.
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