Health experts have told us for years that eating a healthy diet can keep your brain strong as you age.
But what exactly does “healthy” mean? The term is vague. Exactly which foods promote cognition?
Now, a new study may have identified the single healthiest food for your brain.
Scientists from the National University of Singapore conducted a six-year study. They looked at more than 600 subjects over the age of 60.
The research team found that seniors who ate at least two servings of mushrooms a week cut their odds of having mild cognitive impairment (MCI) by about 50%.
The scientists defined a serving as three-quarters of a cup of cooked mushrooms. Smaller portions were also beneficial, but to a lesser extent.
MCI is a common form of age-related mental decline. Most of us have some level of forgetfulness that increases with age. MCI is worse than that, but not as bad as the serious memory loss associated with dementia.
MCI may involve problems with language and attention. It may affect your ability to get around and navigate your way through spaces.
Assistant Professor Lei Feng was lead author of the study. He said the findings were surprising and encouraging. Because “a commonly available single ingredient could have a dramatic effect on cognitive decline.”
The researchers believe that the compound ergothioneine (ET) is what reduces MCI. ET is found in all varieties of mushrooms.
Dr. Irwin Cheah was a member of the research team. He explained that “ET is a unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory which humans are unable to synthesize…But it can be obtained from dietary sources, including mushrooms.”
There are also other compounds in mushrooms that inhibit the production of beta-amyloid. This protein is a likely cause of Alzheimer’s.
3 Types of Mushrooms That Protect Your Brain
Mushrooms with the highest ET content are shiitake, oyster, and king oyster.
Of less exotic mushrooms, portabellas, criminis, and white buttons are the richest in ET.
You can also get ET supplements. They are easy to find from online retailers and health food stores.
Editor’s Note: In the April issue of Independent Healing, you’ll discover the truth about memory loss…and why your worst “senior moments” may have nothing to do with your age or Alzheimer’s. If you show any of these six signs, there could be a secret factor quietly draining your brain. Find out more HERE.