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Friday, July 31, 2009

Bad Brain Food Explained

In my previous post, I discussed the kinds of foods that are good for your brain and exactly how they affect your brain functions and help increase your brain power . Were you able to experience for yourself the unique benefits of legumes, fruits and the likes?

In today’s post, I will share with you those foods that are considered bad for your brain. You may already know this but still, it’s good to be reminded of them from time to time.

Alcohol, Nicotine and Fats

It is common knowledge that alcohol is a no-no for the brain. It is something that goes straight to the bloodstream, killing brain cells in the process. No wonder you’d get tipsy or worse, drunk, and would lose control over your speech and motor skills. Nicotine, on the other hand, constricts your capillaries causing restriction of blood flow to your brain. With no blood flow, there is no oxygen. And with no oxygen, you have poor brain functioning. Hydrogenated fats, though more subtle in its effects, can still cause heart disease by clogging the arteries which is similar to what nicotine does to capillaries. In the long run, alcohol, nicotine and hydrogenated fats can kill you faster. Therefore, a change in diet is a must. The sooner you eliminate these things from your diet, the better.

Artificial Food Substances

Another type of substance that can cause decrease your brain power are the artificial colorings and flavorings that are present in processed food. They cause erratic fluctuations in blood sugar levels causing mood swings, fatigue and erratic behavior. You don’t need to memorize these foods. Just stay away from all refined flour and sugar products (potatoes aren't so good either if taken excessively).

In order for you to understand it better, here’s an explanation:

Carbohydrates you take in are eventually turned into blood sugar and 20% of these carbohydrates are used by your brain. Your brain prefers to have a steady supply of blood sugar rather than a huge supply of it. That is why blood sugar fluctuation is a no-no. This happens when you go on a yo-yo diet such that one day you eat a lot in one sitting, the next day you go on an extreme diet. It would be better if you eat plenty of times in a day but in small amount. This way, your blood sugar is at a steady flow. Do note that simple carbohydrates like processed flour products and sugary foods can cause wild fluctuations. Wild fluctuations cause sugar rush into the bloodstream. When this happens, there’s a rush of insulin which leads to hypoglycemia or plunging blood sugar level which in turn causes the release of adrenal hormones or having that “sugar high” feeling. With these sugar highs and sugar lows, you will be sure on your way towards irritability, mood swing, sleepiness, inattentiveness, etc., all of which are not conducive for maximum brain functioning.

Always remember that complex carbohydrates are the best brain foods. They help increase your levels of brain power. Their molecules are long so the intestines take a lot of time to digest it into simple sugars that the body can use. This then causes a steady supply of sugar into the bloodstream rather than the fluctuation which I have described above.

In addition to these things, having a better IQ will also boost your brain power. Check this site and see if it can also help you like it did a lot of other people.

That’s it about brain foods for now. Do sign up and register to the Newsletter (fill the form above at the right) and email me for any suggestions and comments you may have at

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