10 Brain Foods for Moms 1 of 10
1: Sunflower Seeds
On those days when you wake up in a brain fog barely able to get food on the table, try sunflower seeds. They're noted to be the best whole-food source of vitamin E with 76 percent of the daily value in just one ounce. Vitamin E improves memory and helps protect against future cognitive decline. (It also leads to increased fertility in women.) The portable snack can be baked with cinnamon and sugar or added to cereals. Sunflower seed butter can
also replace peanut butter
Try this granola bar recipe packed with sunflower seeds
10 Brain Foods for Moms 2 of 10
Misplacing your keys multiple times a day? Mixing up play dates? Bulk up your diet with blueberries, a.k.a. the window wipers of your brain. Scientists have determined that blubes help the brain kick memory-hampering debris to the curb. You can mix these brain boosters with oatmeal, drop them into pancake batter or turn them into smoothies. Dried blueberries also taste great with couscous.
Try this blueberry brain-boost smoothie
10 Brain Foods for Moms 3 of 10
3: Leafy Greens
Folate (called folic acid in supplements), B vitamins and iron make leafy greens like kale, romaine and spinach, stars in memory recall. Studies have shown that a diet rich in folic acid is also associated with faster information processing. One way to preserve a big batch of greens is to puree them with a little chicken broth or water and stick them in the freezer in ice cube trays. Then, when youre ready to cook, you can drop them into soups and stews.
Try this homemade kale chip recipe
10 Brain Foods for Moms 4 of 10
4: Black Rice
This antioxidant-rich nutty rice, also referred to as forbidden rice, is the superstar of the grain world. Actually more of a dark purple color when cooked, black rice is on par with blueberries in comparable memory-fighting antioxidants. Available at supermarkets like Whole Foods, black rice is more flavorful and chewier than its white counterpart. You can easily replace white rice with black and use as it a side, or as a stuffing in vegetables like zucchini and tomatoes.
Try this recipe for coconut black rice
10 Brain Foods for Moms 5 of 10
5: Green Tea
Do you pack the washer with the kids clothes, only to realize you never pressed the start button? What you need is green tea, which contains the antioxidant polyphenol. Researchers in Japan found that participants aged 70 and older who had consumed two cups of green tea per day had a clearer mind, sharper memory recognition skills and a better attention span. That bodes well for us moms!
Want green tea?
10 Brain Foods for Moms 6 of 10
6: Wild Salmon
The omega-3 fatty acids and DHA in salmon make it full of brain-boosting power while also helping to improve attention span. Another benefit? Women who consume salmon and other fatty fishes in their third trimester of pregnancy give birth to babies with increased cognitive development. Note: Make sure to buy wild salmon as opposed to farm-raised to reap these benefits.
Try this simple lemon dill grilled salmon recipe
10 Brain Foods for Moms 7 of 10
Theres a hint of truth to the old adage, An apple a day keeps the doctor away. A study out of the University of Massachusetts-Lowell indicated that apples in whole form or in juice improve cognitive functions in both long- and short-term memory. Consume two 8-ounce glasses of apple juice or 2 to 3 apples per day for optimal brain benefits. (You may just want to start sharing those apple juice boxes with your kids.)
17 ways to enjoy apples, whether youre 5 or 50
10 Brain Foods for Moms 8 of 10
Avocados are chock-full of vitamin E, folate and omega-3s, and second to blueberries in terms of brain-health benefits. Avocados contain the good, mono-unsaturated fat, which cleans out the brain with healthy blood flow and is also linked to cognitive renewal. Just 1/4 to 1/2 of an avocado a day is enough to maximize those brain-boosting powers. Not a guacamole fan? Try mashing an avocado on toast for breakfast, or sprinkle with sea salt and chile flakes and devour on its own.
Try avocado cupcakes for a healthy twist on chocolate
10 Brain Foods for Moms 9 of 10
Not only do eggs provide energy, the choline nutrient gives the brain a memory boost. Researchers have found that choline positively affects the areas of brain responsible for memory function and learning ability. Also, choline contributes to fetal brain development so much so that The National Academy of Sciences recommends an increased intake for pregnant or breastfeeding women. Keep hardboiled eggs on hand in the fridge for a snack and incorporate eggs into meals other than just breakfast.
Eat big for breakfast with these Texas baked biscuits
10 Brain Foods for Moms 10 of 10
10: Dark Chocolate
Sometimes stress overload from cranky kids and sleepless nights can drive you right to the candy dish. Well, it turns out, maybe that isnt such a bad habit. Dark chocolate (containing at least 70 percent of cocoa) offers some serious brain support. Chocolates natural stimulants give a slight boost in energy, which directly improves concentration. But the lasting benefits from dark chocolate come in the form of antioxidants that prevent brain cell damage. Remember that moderation is key — less than one ounce a day is enough to provide benefits.
This 2-minute homemade dark chocolate syrup is a quick sweet fix