Make your brain more energy efficient. A study of 65-85 year old adults revealed how much effort it takes a vegetable deprived brain to work. It was a small study, but the results could be very useful and provide another reason to eat your fruits and vegetables.
When researchers virtually peered inside the brains of older adults they saw something interesting. Using a functional MRI machine they analyzed brain activity when the participants were recalling words they had memorized. All participants recalled the same number of words, but what was different was the effort required.
Participants who ate lots of carotenoids, specifically lutein and zeaxanthin, used less effort in recalling the words. In other words, the people that ate colourful fruits and vegetables had energy efficient brains.
Carotenoids give plants their vibrant colours. Lutein and zeaxanthin are know to improve eye health and cognitive health in adults. Lutein also prevents artherosclerosis, the formation of plaque in your arteries.
Researchers were wondering if supplements may improve cognitive improvement.
Personally, I would stick to eating all the colours in fruits and vegetables. We should know by now that nutrients work like an orchestra, the interactions are important, and as soon we start isolating nutrients we lose the other benefits.
Not only do fruits and vegetables contain more carotenoids, they also contain fiber, vitamins and minerals that affect our health.
Where would you find carotenoids? In kale, spinach, turnip greens, summer squash, pumpkin, paprika, yellow-fleshed fruits and avocado.
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