There are certain food items that are capable of causing multiple adverse effects on the brain, such as impairing your memory, disrupting your mood and raising the risk factors that lead to the development of dementia. Statistics reveal that by 2030, over 65 million people are likely to suffer from dementia. And if you want to start protecting your brain, you need to start reconsidering your eating habits right this second.
1. Refined Carbs
Refined carbohydrates are made up of highly processed grains and sugars, for instance, white flour, and these kinds of carbs tend to have a high glycemic index. In simpler words, our body is capable of digesting refined carbs quickly, which leads to a spike in insulin levels and blood sugar.
Moreover, when refined carbs are consumed in large amounts, these food items tend to cause a high glycemic load (GL), which basically refers to the extent a certain food item can increase your food levels depending on the serving size you consumes.
2. Sugary Beverages
Sugary beverages, such as sodas, energy drinks, packaged fruit juices and sports drinks, cause us to consume an excessive amount of sugar and artificial flavours, which not only add up extra pounds to our waistlines but also increase our risk factors to develop heart disease and type 2 diabetes, along with harming the health of our brain.
Research reveals that excessive consumption of sugary beverages raises the risk factors that contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes, which also increases the risk factors of Alzheimer’s disease. Moreover, high sugar levels within the blood stream can raise the risk factors of dementia, even amongst individuals not suffering from diabetes.
Scientists have highlighted the multiple adverse effects of high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), a basic ingredient found in most sugary beverages, which comprises of 55% fructose and 45% glucose. A high consumption of high-fructose corn syrup can cause high blood pressure levels, diabetes, obesity, high blood fats and arterial dysfunction. All the factors contribute to the metabolic syndrome, along with increasing the long-term risk factors of suffering from dementia.
3. Highly Processed Foods
Highly processed food items contain an unhealthy concentration of salt, fats and sugar, and they include all store-bought processed foods, ready-to-eat meals, instant noodles, bakery items, sweets, candies, microwave popcorns, bottled sauces, and chips amongst others. These foods are not only extremely low in nutrients, but they also pack up heaps of waist-thickening calories.
They cause plenty of negative effects on the brain, along with being one of the primary causes of weight gain. A recent study attempted to study the effects of a diet rich in highly processed food items amongst a sample of 130 individuals, and the results revealed a marked reduction in brain tissues, even during the first stages of metabolic syndrome.
Research reveals that the lack of nutrient density in processed foods, which make up a large proportion of the Western diet, tend to cause-effect the brain adversely, along with promoting the development of degenerative diseases.
Consuming alcohol with mindful moderation makes it a healthy and taste-making companion to an indulgent meal, however, when you start consuming it excessively, it can cause serious harm to your brain. Research reveals that chronic alcohol can lead to serious reductions in brain volume, along with bringing about metabolic variances, and causing severe disruptions to the functioning of neurotransmitters, which are basically the chemicals that aid the brain in communicating.
Individuals who suffer from alcoholism usually tend to have a vitamin B1 deficiency, and this leads to the development of Wernicke’s encephalopathy, a brain disorder that can rapidly develop into Korsakoff’s syndrome.
So, it important to understand that moderation is the key to enjoy the positive health benefits of alcohol, while excessive alcohol consumption can cause severe brain damage, memory loss, sleep disruption and behaviour changes. Teenagers and young adults should avoid alcohol consumption and binge drinking completely because they fall in the high-risk groups. Lastly, pregnant must steer clear of alcohol at all costs.
5. Fish High in Mercury
Research reveals that mercury is a heavy metal contaminant that is capable of being store within animal tissues for long periods of time, and it acts as a neurological poison to the brain. Predatory fish that has had a long lifespan tends to be particularly likely to boost a rich build-up of mercury, and it can even carry more than 1 million times richer concentration of mercury than the water it is surrounded with.
Therefore, seafood, especially wild fish varieties, are the basic food source that adds mercury to the human diet. When an individual ingests mercury-laden fish, it tends to spread throughout the body, and gets concentrated within the brain, the kidneys and the liver. When pregnant women ingest mercury, it tends to concentrate within the placenta and foetus.
Food items contain several harmful substances that can prove to be dangerous for our brain. Alcohol has been found the main culprit that causes excessive brain damage when consumed excessively, while certain seafood varieties are loaded with mercury, which makes them neurotoxic and capable of causing permanent damage to the brain, particularly the developing brains of children and foetus.