It’s no secret that exercise is good for your heart. It shouldn’t be a surprise that it’s also healthy for your brain.
It’s all about good blood flow. Exercise gets the blood pumping head to toe but moving your body is only the first step.
Your blood has to be full of the right cocktail to fuel your brain. You can get your groove on all day but if you are stuffing your face with greasy burgers and cake then don't expect to be thinking like Einstein at work.
Paying attention to a few key areas daily- Movement, Meditation, and Nutrition- is all it takes to be on your A-game and boost your brain power. Seems to simple but it’s true. The best part, you have total control.
We’ve already shared in previous blog posts how much Physical Activity and Meditation you need daily to improve your mood, attention, memory, and energy levels along with the low down on how to get started.
So let’s talk about food. Specifically, clean eating, and the nutrients your brain needs to work like a finely tuned machine.
CLEAN EATING involves:
You may be wondering how in the world you are going to fit
this clean eating business into your day...
First, you have to plan ahead so you grab the right foods when you get busy.
Next try one of these 5 simple suggestions for going clean without the overwhelm:
*The Smoothie Solution:
Start your day with a Protein Shake. Tips to Build a Balanced Shake:
GREEN SHAKE RECIPES:
Take 1 handful of kale (stems and all)
8 ounces of water
1 handful of frozen fruit or blueberries
1 banana (optional)
Blend all ingredients until smooth.
Green Protein Smoothie
1 serving Vanilla Protein Powder
9 ounces Almond Milk
1 handful Baby Spinach
½ cup Honeydew Melon
Blend all ingredients until smooth.
*The Mediterranean Diet Plan:
Research has shown that the traditional Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of heart disease. What’s that? Better BLOOD FLOW? That’s perfect for your brain!
It’s also associated with reduced risk of cancer, Parkinson’s (brain disease) and Alzheimer’s disease (brain disease). Ding ding ding!!! We have a winner.
This eating plan is basically full of the top 12 Super Foods. You would eat primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts. Plus limit your red meat to no more than a few times a month while eating fish and poultry at least twice a week.
Replace that creamy, yummy butter (you can do it) with healthy fats such as olive oil and canola oil and use herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods.
Add some red wine (in moderation- of course), eat your meals with family or friends, and get daily exercise. Pretty much covers all the bases for having a sharp, healthy brain. You can Google recipes if this plan floats your boat- they are everywhere. Better yet, take a trip to the Mediterranean for some taste testing!
*Grab Green on the Go:
Green juice is everywhere now. You can drink your veggies if you are low on time. You can also add green super food powders to your smoothie or water. One scoop of powder will give you probiotics for your gut, chlorella, blue green algae, digestive enzymes, spirulina, wheat grass, flax seed and all kinds of veggies for decreasing inflammation and improving gut health. It’s great for when you are traveling. No excuses not to eat your veggies.
Worried about the cost of going organic? Try shopping at your local Farmer’s Market. The prices are usually more affordable. Even though they don’t say organic, they are typically the same quality. It’s just expensive for small farms to get that fancy organic label. A lot of cities now have home delivery services to get local fruits, veggies and meat directly from the farm to your table.
Hopefully these ideas help you feel like it’s more doable to start eating clean today!
Go ahead and give your brain it’s daily dose of movement, meditation, and clean eating (with Super Foods) so you can tap into your full potential!
And say goodbye to brain fog forever.
Pick one suggestion and test it out. Let us know how much better you feel, think and perform in the comments below.
Happy Clean Eating!
Mollie & Ender
P.S. Download this FREE Healthy Traveler Packing List for immune boosting nutrition & exercise resources that'll help you be a well-rested travel warrior. Good for year-round self-care & to prep for your next trip.
Mollie Miller, PT