Recent studies on how certain nutrients and foods can prevent mental decline have shown promising results. If age did not have an impact on mental abilities like memory, focus and acuity, growing old would not be considered to be such a bad thing. According to researchers, the intake of certain nutrients can ensure that the mind remains agile even when people begin to age but the preventive measures have to be implemented in the early years itself. Let us take a look at some of these new findings.
Low homocysteine levels have shown to slow the pace of mental decline. This amino acid that is naturally present in most proteins plays a critical role in emerging heart diseases, brain degenerative processes and blood vessel abnormalities. However, if one is to consume folic acid and vitamins B1, B2, B6 and B12 in sufficient quantities, homocysteine levels can be lowered and the brain can be shielded from degenerative conditions like dementia. Vegetables, whole grains and nuts will provide one with the necessary nutrients and in case, they do not suffice, a doctor can always prescribe appropriate vitamin supplements.
A Mediterranean diet is also known to provide a number of high quality nutrients that can prevent mental decline and early aging. The diet is most popular in countries like Spain, Italy and Greece and it offers highly reduced quantities of eggs, meat, butter and fat that is derived from animals. Instead, a typical Mediterranean diet comprises mostly of fish, plant derived oils, vegetables, rice, whole grain bread, pasta, rice, nuts and seeds. By consuming such a diet, one can lower his cholesterol levels and also receive adequate supplies of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids. These oils are known to have a protective impact on the cells in the nervous system. This particular diet also offers plenty of vitamin B and folic acid that help to lower homocysteine levels in the body and thus keeps the brain from degenerating.
Studies have also shown that a number of Chinese herbs help to prevent mental decline. Ginko Biloba for instance is a herbal supplement that has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries. In the West, it grew popular for its memory-enhancing properties as it has shown to prevent mental impairment and memory loss. Though supplements of ginko biloba are available without prescription, ideally one must consult a doctor regarding its potential therapy. Huperziz Serrata which is also known as Chinese club moss is another herb that can increase acetylcholine levels, thus enabling the body to transmit brain signals better. Most Alzheimer’s patients are known to have a low level of this neurotransmitter but if one is to consume Chinese club moss, he can prevent such degenerative conditions from emerging.