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Are you eating for maximum brain function?

Research reveals that the brain is a growing, changing organ, and that you can alter the brain's structure, wiring and functioning for maximum achievement through your diet. Ask your doctor about these off-the-shelf sources of brain food and daily dosage (dd) recommendations.

Antioxidants neutralize oxygen-free radicals, compounds that destroy brain cells, to keep brain cells healthy and protect memory and intelligence: dd 3 prunes, ½ cup berries, ½ cup spinach, steeped tea, Vitamine C dd 1,000 mg, Vitimine E dd 400 IU to 800 IU (derived from Soy).

Polyphenols are antioxidants that protect brain cells: dd 2 glasses red wine or purple grape juice.

Alpha lipoic acid is the nutrient that helps other antioxidants work their magic and may also help restore memory: dd 50 mg.

Omega-3s contain eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). When we consume this beneficial fat, much of it gets converted into eicosanoids, hormone-like substances that direct the inflammatory response and other functions within the immune system, heart and brain. Omega-3s can be a powerful adjunct in treating patients with bipolar disorder (manic depression) through its ability to block abnormal brain cell signaling: dd 1 g to 2 g a day (look for distilled fish oil capsules with at least 50% omega-e concentration or flaxseed oil).

DHA, a component in fish oil, can enhance memory and learning: dd 300 mg or cold water fish.

Selenium, a trace mineral, is essential for proper brain function: dd 200 mcg or grains, garlic, tuna, swardfish.

Vitamin B6, crucial for memory. B6 helps lower levels of homocysteine, a blood chemical that has been linked to mental disturbances, intellectual declines and dementia as well as to heart attack: dd 10 to 50 mg.

Vitamine B-12 is necessary for normal brain and nerve function, and to prevent permanent neurological damage, disorientation, memory problems and senility: dd 500 to 1,000 mcg.

Ginkgo biloba helps boost memory and concentration and reduce confusion: dd 120 mg.

Phosphatidylserine, derived from soy and a natural fat that is present in every cell membrane of the body, is suggested to reverse age-related memory loss in clinical studies and it is essential for memory and other higher brain functions: dd 100 mg.

Natural sugars in fruit and carrots stimulate the brain to think faster and recall information more quickly: dd unlimited

Brain food blockers include: white flour, refined white sugar, turkey, and the combination of meat and starch.

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