There are tons of factors that can ultimately lead to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis at some point in your life. Extremely scary sentence to read…we totally understand. Doctors and researchers speculate that the disease is caused by a “perfect storm” of health risks, genetics, head injuries, diet, and several other factors. Of course, much of this is pure speculation and even people who seem super healthy can still develop Alzheimer’s. However, one thing that no doctor or scientist will dispute is that keeping a healthy diet can greatly diminish your risk factors for developing Alzheimer’s and other life threatening diseases. Here we’ll go over some “power foods” that can help to mitigate the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Eating foods that are rich in vitamin A, C, & E and have lots of antioxidants will help to keep the brain healthy and active. Below is a breakdown of foods that are packed with each and some tasty recipes to help make eating healthy delicious too!

Vitamin A Foods

Vitamin A is so important for us to eat because it helps to keep your vision, skin, bones, and most importantly, your immune system healthy. Some foods that are loaded with vitamin A are:

–       sweet potatoes, carrots, kale, butternut squash, romaine lettuce, tuna (which is also very high in protein and Omega 3), mango, and broccoli raab (especially tasty if you’re in South Philly)

Sweet Potatoes are great a source of vitamin A

Sweet Potatoes are great a source of vitamin A

Check out this recipe for Emril Lagasse’s butternut squash soup. Ridiculously delicious and healthy! Win!

Vitamin C Foods

Having regular doses of vitamin C helps us in so many ways. For starters, it helps to keep your digestive system healthy and functioning properly, it reduces the risk of bone and tissue damage, and is an extremely potent antioxidant. Here are a few vitamin c heavy foods:

–       oranges (and other citrusy fruits), bell peppers, broccoli, strawberries, papaya, and brussel sprouts

Brussel Sprouts are delicious and high in Vitamin C

Brussel Sprouts are delicious and high in Vitamin C

Make this curried chicken and mango salad dish to show your culinary prowess and help your fellow diners prevent disease!

Vitamin E Foods

Vitamin E has been used extensively in treating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and dementia. Like vitamin C, vitamin E is a strong antioxidant that helps the body relieve itself of unwanted toxins that can ultimately lead to disease. Foods rich with vitamin E include:

–       Sunflower seeds, almonds, peanuts, and avocado

Check out these 8 avocado recipes from health.com that aren’t guacamole.

Antioxidant Heavy Foods

Lot’s of people throw around the term “antioxidant” but very few people know what oxidation is and why it’s bad. Let us clear that up for you. Oxidation, when referring to the human body and food, is essentially the equivalent to what rust is to metal or the process that turns a banana peel brown. Basically, oxidation is the process of oxygen leaving that organism and then having that organism ultimately deteriorate. Foods packed with antioxidants help to minimize damage to your cells because they slow the oxidation process. There. Now let’s see some antioxidant rich foods, shall we?

–       Pecans, apples, cranberries, blueberries, and pinto beans

Blueberries are extremely healthy and are a great antioxidant

Blueberries are extremely healthy and are a great antioxidant

Try this Autumn salad with grapes and cheese to load up on antioxidants for your next meal.

Eating healthy and living an overall healthy lifestyle will benefit you in thousands of ways. Don’t forget, one of the biggest regrets people who are nearing the end of their life commonly have is that they didn’t take better care of themselves when they were younger. As you get older it becomes increasingly more difficult to keep yourself in shape and healthy…so start now because tomorrow it might be too late.

 

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