Choose something from each of the whole-food categories – carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
Carbohydrates are the most essential part of our diet for long-term health and brain function. But not the carbohydrates that are highly processed, stripped of their nutrients and fiber (like doughnuts, bagels and sweets). We want real, whole plant foods containing the vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytonutrients that create health.
Low-glycemic legumes (lentils, chickpeas, soybeans)
Abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables teaming with phytonutrients (carotenoids, flavonoids, polyphenols)
Slow-burning, low-glycemic vegetables (asparagus, broccoli, kale, spinach, cabbage, Brussel sprouts)
Optimal fruit (Berries, cherries, peaches, plums, rhubarb, pears, apples)
Suitable fruit (cantaloupes and melons, grapes and kiwifruit) – they have more sugar.
High fiber (legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains, vegetables, and fruit)
Minimize starchy, high-glycemic cooked vegetables (potatoes, corn, rutabagas, parsnips, and turnips)
Smaller portions – A large meal will raise your blood sugar
Omega-3 fats are the most important building blocks for a healthy brain and cells.
Cold-water fish (wild salmon, sardines, herring, small halibut, black cod) contain a lot of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids that reduce inflammation.
Emergency food - Canned wild salmon, sardines or herring (kippers)
Omega-3 eggs contain a safe form of DHA (you can eat up to 8 eggs a week) and are a rich source of choline for your brain.
Cooking - Extra-virgin olive oil contains anti-inflammatory and antioxidant phytochemicals.
High-temperature cooking – Unrefined or expeller pressed sesame oil
Protein provides us with the amino acids that make neurotransmitters. Each person is different and thrives on different types of food. You may be fine as vegan, someone else may not. Find the right balance for you by experimenting with animal versus other sources for protein. Either way, you have to have protein at each meal.
Beans or legumes including soy products (edamame, tofu, and tempeh)
Nuts (almonds, walnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans)
Seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, flax, chia)
Safe, mercury-free fish
Organic, grass-fed, hormone-free, antibiotic-free, and pesticide-free poultry
Small amounts of lean, organic, grass-fed, hormone-free, and antibiotic-free lamb or beef
Avoid excessive quantities of meats (no more than 4-6 ounces per serving, no more than once or twice a week)
During the preparation week, take note of your eating habits. Do your meals contain something from each of these categories?
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