Flavonoids are antioxidants that head straight to your hippocampus to boost its function. Your hippocampus contains a large portion of your grey matter—the stuff you use to process thoughts and emotions and retain memories. You actually have two hippocampi—one on each side of your brain. Back when the brain was first being mapped, Greek scientists thought the hippocampi looked something like a seahorse in shape and size, and hence they came up with the unusual name.
Your hippocampi need protection as you age. They’re usually the first place that damage starts to set in. Once this damage becomes significant enough, you could start to notice the first signs of Alzheimer’s. You might not be able to remember the names of the actors in your favorite TV shows, your cousins, or even some of your friends. You may start to feel disoriented and that your brain just isn’t firing on all cylinders.
Here’s where flavonoids come in. These potent substances have the ability to reverse age-related memory and learning problems. They do this by protecting your signaling pathways in your brain. This means that when you’re trying to process some new information or want to recall a memory, flavonoids can help your neurons communicate quickly and efficiently with one another. Think of flavonoids as the “express package” when it comes to boosting the processing power inside your hippocampi.
Here are three foods that could make you smarter because of their flavonoid content: blueberries, green tea, and gingko biloba. These foods have some of the highest flavonoid content out there. Consume them on a regular basis to keep your hippocampi free from the ravages of aging. In fact, you could start your day with fresh blueberries and plain, low-fat yogurt. Next, make yourself a cup of green tea. Add a teaspoon of honey if you like (which is a great healing food on its own). Take a little gingko biloba in the afternoon and you’ll be processing thoughts like Einstein—well, almost!
Source(s) for Today’s Article:
Rendeiro, C., et al., “Flavonoids as modulators of memory and learning: molecular interactions resulting in behavioural effects,” Proc Nutr Soc. May 2012; 71(2): 246-62.