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The 10 Best Superfoods for the Brain

Editorial Team
Editorial Team
best superfoods for the brain

For every meal you consume, about 20% of the calories go to your brain. That might not seem like a lot, but when you consider that the brain is only one of the 78 organs in the body, that’s a significant amount of energy.

The human brain needs constant power to function normally. Eating the right foods can make a huge difference in your brain health, and using superfoods for the brain helps to keep it in top condition. 

Discover how to feed your brain with this comprehensive guide. Here are 10 of the best superfoods for your brain that you should include in your diet to help keep your mind sharp and healthy.

The Brain Explained 

Before going into foods for brain health, here are some essential facts about the brain that you should know:

  • An adult's brain weighs three pounds (about 1.36 kilograms), or 2% of body weight
  • The brain is not a muscle; it's 60% fat, 40% protein, water, minerals, and carbohydrates
  • Brain tissue contains blood vessels and nerves that extend to the spinal cord to create the central nervous system
  • The brain is the body's control center, processing signals that determine speech, breathing, learning, movement, heartbeat, hormones, vision, etc.
  • Brain foods contain nutrients that nurture brain cells (neurons), cell membranes, and molecules that support cognition

Which Nutrients Support Brain Health? 

It's vital to choose high-quality foods rich in nutrients for your overall well-being. However, the brain loves certain foods that support its structure and functions. Look for superfoods for the brain containing the following healthy compounds: 

  • Vitamin B: aids metabolism and creates new brain cells
  • Vitamin E: supports healthy immunity and cell signaling 
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: may lower the risk of neurological diseases and assist with memory and depression 
  • Choline: supports cell structures and neurotransmitters in the brain
  • Antioxidants: protect cells from harmful free radicals linked to brain inflammation and memory loss

10 Best Superfoods for the Brain 

The best brain-boosting foods come from whole, all-natural ingredients combined with a healthy green powder supplement to elevate your nutrition. If you eat the following superfoods mindfully and strategically, you may reap tremendous benefits for your brain health. 

1. Turmeric 

Turmeric is more than a vibrant yellow-golden food coloring or spice. It contains curcumin, which is among the best superfoods for the brain. Curcumin moves easily through the blood-brain barrier to deliver its potential health benefits directly, such as aiding serotonin and dopamine, memory, and brain cell growth. 

The best way to support brain health with turmeric is through supplements. Of course, you can add turmeric to your food and beverages, but they contain only 6% of curcumin, which is inadequate for brain-supportive effects. 

2. Nuts

Peanuts, walnuts, and almonds are excellent additions to your brain diet. These crunchy superfoods contain vitamin E, which supports cognitive function

In addition, nuts have healthy fats and compounds that are good for your heart and memory. But remember that nuts also have high-calorie content, so be mindful of how you eat them.

A handful of nuts in your protein shake, smoothie, yogurt, salad, or stir-fry boosts nutrients and flavor. They're also great as everyday snacks, but watch your portions to manage your calorie count.

3. Whole Grains 

Another source of vitamin E is whole-grain foods. Choose whole wheat bread and pasta, brown rice, oatmeal, and barley over their processed counterparts to maximize their nutritional value for your brain. 

Milling removes the nutrient-rich core of the grains to make more affordable flour that lasts longer in stores and is easier to cook. Whole grains lose none of their nutrients, so they support your overall health and immunity.

4. Fish 

Sardines, trout, salmon, and tuna are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids. For plant-based alternatives, consider adding soybeans, chia seeds, and flaxseed to your diet. Individuals with low omega-3 intake struggle with memory, depression, and learning challenges.

Increasing omega-3 intake supports your nervous system, aiding with mood disorders and mental decline.

5. Eggs 

Eggs are superfoods for the brain because they have crucial brain nutrients like vitamin B6, vitamin B12, and choline. These compounds help your brain in the following ways: 

  • Assisting with mood and memory by generating neurotransmitters 
  • Maintaining chemical balance in the brain
  • Helping to reduce the effects of aging on the brain

Choline is worth noting as most people don't get enough of it in their diets. Experts recommend 550 mg and 425 mg of choline daily for men and women. However, one egg yolk has 112 mg of this nutrient, which means consuming up to 5 eggs per day. 

If you have dietary restrictions, are allergic to eggs, or have limited access to them, a green powder supplement may help reach your intake requirements.

6. Avocados 

Healthy, unsaturated fats from avocados also support brain health through circulation. This roundabout benefit comes from the connection between the blood and brain disorders. Remember that the brain comprises blood vessels that transport oxygen and nutrients.

Avocados and other monounsaturated fat sources like nuts and fish can help keep your brain healthy. In fact, a study on seniors found that avocado consumption significantly improved cognitive performance and scores on cognition tests.

7. Blueberries 

All berries are good for you, but blueberries are at the top of the antioxidant list. They contain anthocyanins, which fight inflammation in the body. Add blueberries to smoothies and cereal, or eat them as a calorie-free snack. Eating more blueberries can boost your brain by: 

  • Keeping memory loss at bay
  • Helping to reduce tissue damage from oxidative stress
  • Assisting with the effects of age-related mental decline 

8. Pumpkin Seeds 

Remember that the brain's composition includes minerals that help create hormones and enzymes. Pumpkin seeds contain essential minerals like zinc, magnesium, iron, and copper. These minerals can help with brain fog, control nerve signals, and aid learning and memory.

Consuming pumpkin seeds and other minerals from whole foods and supplements may assist with brain-related conditions like depression, migraines, and more. 

9. Green Tea 

Green tea is a brain-supporting beverage not just because of its caffeine content. It contains L-theanine, an amino acid known to regulate anxiety and help you relax. It counters the stimulating effects of caffeine in green tea and helps calm the brain. 

Green tea can help with cognitive decline, and its polyphenols also fight inflammation in your brain and body. You can take green tea as a simple hot brew sweetened with honey or as a base for smoothies and iced drinks.

10. Green Vegetables 

All vegetables are healthy and nutritious, but green vegetables like leafy greens are the ideal superfoods for the brain. Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and kale have vitamins, minerals, and flavonoids, which combine to support your immunity, manage stress levels, and help with age-related brain concerns. 

How to Take a Holistic Approach to Brain Health

These ten superfoods for the brain are only one part of supporting brain health. The other part of the equation is to support your diet with beneficial lifestyle choices. Here are the top 5 proven ways to maintain excellent physical and mental shape. 

1. Stay active in mind and body

To stimulate your neurons, challenge your brain with activities like arts and crafts, math problems, and puzzles. Keep your brain engaged in generating new, healthy cells that sharpen your focus, memory, and learning abilities. 

Physical exercise also contributes to a healthy brain by regulating stress and circulation and helping many different bodily functions. 

2. Prioritize your sleep

Sleep is not a luxury but an essential component of a healthy brain. When you're sleep-deprived, you feel fatigued and lose focus, and even worse, you increase the chances of serious health concerns that can affect brain function. Try to sleep for at least 7 hours daily to improve your quality of life. 

3. Stop smoking and drinking 

The addictive nature of tobacco and alcohol makes them challenging to quit. However, they also heighten your risk of numerous illnesses and brain decline. Given these choices, it's infinitely better to reduce and ultimately stop these harmful habits for the sake of good health. 

4. Socialize 

Social distancing, fear, and stigma made socializing difficult, if not impossible, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. But as we adjust to the "new normal," we should find every opportunity to socialize. Meeting new people, engaging with our communities, and spending family time all contribute to a healthy brain. 

5. Manage your weight 

Maintaining an optimum weight often translates to great health, but it is easier said than done. Make a conscious effort to eat nutritious foods, manage stress, and sleep enough hours to keep your weight consistent. 

Consider taking a super greens powder in your food and beverages to help fill any nutrient gaps during a caloric deficit. If exercise is a challenge, try low-impact activities like walking, gardening, or doing household chores. Stay mindful of your weight, and your brain will reward you. 

Fortify Your Superfoods for the Brain with Live it Up Super Greens

Now that you know the ten best superfoods for the brain and how to support your health, you can get even more nutrition with Live it Up Super Greens (previously known as Ensō Supergreens).

This superfood green powder is all-natural, packed with healthy leafy greens, and fits many diets and lifestyle preferences. Add Super Greens to smoothies, salads, fruit juice, soup, coffee, and many other recipes to help enhance your body and mind today.

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Editorial Team
Editorial Team
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