This article delves into the fascinating world of supplements and their potential to enhance our cognitive vitality.
As we age, it's essential to provide our brains with the nourishment they need to thrive.
While a healthy diet forms the foundation of brain health, supplements may serve as potential valuable allies in our quest for optimal cognitive function.
Join us as we explore the top supplements believed to improve brain health and unlock the potential of our remarkable minds!
Understanding the supplement landscape
We need to make this exceptionally clear: At Five Lives, we believe in a food-first approach.
Most healthy people don’t need to take any pills to stay healthy or keep their brains sharp.
You can get all of your vitamin requirements from fresh, whole foods without ever needing supplementation. This means avoiding processed foods (or really anything made in a lab) as they really are just jam-packed with nonsense.
However, we understand that this is an area that people are interested in, so we’ll demystify the supplement landscape and gain a clearer understanding of how they work to support brain health.
Each supplement offers unique benefits that contribute to overall cognitive well-being, from vitamins and minerals to herbal extracts and fatty acids.
The brain-body connection
Recognising that our brain health is intricately linked to our overall physical well-being is essential.
We stand a much better chance of optimising our brain's performance by supporting our bodies through proper nutrition and supplementation.
Watch this TED talk to learn more about the connection between your brain and your body:
1) Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids, particularly DHA and EPA, play a crucial role in brain health.
These essential fats are abundant in fatty fish, walnuts, and flaxseeds, but for those who may not consume enough through their diet, omega-3 supplements can bridge the gap.
This is especially true for those who may have allergies or intolerances.
These supplements have been associated with improved cognitive function, memory, and overall brain health.
Have a look at this quick video to discover whether omega 3 supplements could have any effect on your risk of developing dementia:
2) Vitamin B complex
The B vitamins, including B6, B9 (folate), and B12, are vital for brain health.
They support the production of neurotransmitters, which are crucial for communication between brain cells.
Supplementation may be recommended in the case of normalising an extreme deficiency for a short time period.
Curcumin, the active compound found in turmeric, has garnered attention for its potential brain-boosting properties.
With its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, curcumin has shown promise in supporting memory, attention, and overall cognitive function.
Supplementation usually isn’t required as you can absorb it naturally by combining it with a bit of black pepper.
Want to learn more about the benefits of curcumin? Take look at this quick video:
Resveratrol, a compound found in red grapes and berries, has been linked to numerous health benefits, including brain health.
This powerful antioxidant exhibits neuroprotective properties and supports cognitive function.
Incorporating resveratrol-rich foods can contribute to our brain-health journey.
5) Ginkgo Biloba
Ginkgo biloba, derived from the leaves of the ancient Ginkgo tree, has a long history of use in traditional medicine.
Known for its cognitive-enhancing properties, ginkgo biloba has been associated with improved memory, focus, and mental clarity.
Always speak to a medical professional before trying any new type of supplementation.
Choosing the right supplements - quality matters
When it comes to supplements, quality is paramount.
Look for reputable brands that adhere to strict manufacturing standards and third-party testing.
Additionally, consulting with a healthcare professional or nutritionist can help determine the right supplements and dosages based on individual needs.
Personalisation is key
Remember, each person's brain-health journey is unique. What works for one individual may have a different effect on another.
It's crucial to listen to our bodies, track our progress, and adjust as needed.
Where possible, always take a food-first approach and chat with a healthcare professional before considering any supplements.