People who maintain larger brains as they age have better cognitive abilities and thinking skills, so researchers decided to determine what effect, if any, diet has on brain volume. They studied over 4,200 people, analyzing both their diets and scans of their brains.
Those who ate a diet rich in vegetables, fruit, nuts and fish had an average of 2 milliliters more total brain volume than those who did not.
To put this in perspective, having a brain volume that’s 3.6 milliliters smaller is equivalent to one year of aging.
So simply eating a better diet reduces your brain age by close to seven months.
And it doesn’t stop there.
You can boost the volume of your brain by:
• Walking — A scientific study supported by the National Institute on Aging found that people who walk between 6 and 9 miles per week have higher volumes of gray matter in their brains even up to nine years later.
• Getting some sun — Lower levels of vitamin D are also associated with brain shrinkage, so get out and get some sun! Better yet, add a vitamin D3 supplement to your daily routine to ensure that your levels are optimized even when you can’t spend enough time outside.
• Finding “you time” — Both stress and depression cause loss of brain volume by literally breaking the connections between your brain cells. Find time to relax and decompress and practice meditation and deep breathing exercises to get back on track.
On top of these tips, it’s vital to feed your brain the nutrients it needs in order to keep it functioning optimally.
The No. 1 supplement I recommend when it comes to your brain is fish oil since higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids have been linked to higher brain volumes. This is especially important if you’re post-menopausal.
My go-to fish oil supplement is Peak Super Mega3™ thanks to its longer shelf life and higher concentrations of EPA, DHA and omega-3s.
The second supplement I recommend when it comes to keeping your brain sharp is pyrroloquinoline quinone or PQQ. PQQ supports healthy aging of your brain cells by supporting the health of your brain cells’ “energy generators” — your mitochondria.
Third, I recommend ubiquinol, a highly absorbable, stabilized form of CoQ10, to further optimize healthy aging of your brain cells so that you can preserve brain volume and prevent shrinkage longer.
By Bob Livingston