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We’ve said it before that gut health affects our brain health and that there are foods that have either a positive or negative effect on our mental health.

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According to Harvard nutritionist-psychiatrist – Dr. Uma Naidoo, who is also a researcher in the field of brain health, there are some foods that help our brain reach its peak efficiency.

Related: 18 Best Supplements for Gut Health: Improve Digestion, Immunity, and More

Below are the 6 Best Foods For Brain Health as described by Dr. Uma Naidoo.


As well as adding flavor and aroma to our food, spices have antioxidant properties that protect our brains from oxidative stress.

Two very beneficial spices for our body are turmeric and saffron. The former, thanks to curcumin, its main substance, helps fight stress and protects the memory. Saffron, on the other hand, according to recent research, helps to combat depression.

Black Chocolate

Black chocolate contains iron that helps the brain neurons that regulate mood. At the same time, it is rich in antioxidants, reducing the incidence of depression, according to research. [1] Nutritionists recommend consuming black chocolate rather than milk as it contains much less sugar.

Related: Best Foods For Depression Based On Research: Top 12 Foods That Help Fight Depression

Fermented products

These include products that mix milk, vegetables or other raw ingredients with bacteria and nutritional yeast.

Some examples are yoghurt, kimchi and kombucha. These are sources of good bacteria that promote gut health.

Yoghurt with probiotics is very beneficial for brain health. But be careful to choose the right products, not yoghurt desserts, as the latter are also high in calories and contain no good bacteria.

Related: Healthy Gut 101: Probiotics & Prebiotics Benefits and How they Affect Your Gut [Infographic]


Avocados are a good source of magnesium, which directly helps brain health. Many scientific studies have linked depression to reduced magnesium intake.



Nuts are a source of omega-3 fats, which improve memory and cognitive ability. Nutritionists recommend ¼ cup daily, without salt. They can be eaten plain or in salads.

Related: Neuroactiv6 Review: Best Brain Boosting Nootropic?

Green Leafy Vegetables

Green leafy vegetables such as kale or spinach have flavonoids and Vitamin E, nutrients that protect the body against dementia. They are also a source of folic acid, which has beneficial properties for mental health.

Related: Natural Anti-Aging: 2 Vegetables For a New Brain Based On Research

Final Take

The above foods protect our brain – the most important part of our body. If you want to learn more about healthy foods that we should consume on a daily basis, check out the article 21 Best Foods That Boost The Immune System and the article 40 Real Foods to Eat to Live Longer, Happier & Healthier.

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