Power plant:Are vegetables the key to a healthy brain?

Your brain: The world’s most complex computer, capable of holding millions of memories, thoughts, feelings and emotions, for years scientists have studied the brain to find out it’s secrets and many parts of it remain unknown even to this day.

Vegetables: those things our parents force us to eat.

Vegetables are not just your least favorite food, they are essential to a healthy diet and eating that small piece of broccoli could be the difference between health and illness for your brain.

Researchers at the miami miller school of medicine followed 28,000 men for two decades starting when they were 51 years old, participants were required to answer questions about their consumption of fruit and vegetables, the researchers also took tests of thinking and memory skills when participants were 73 years old.

The researchers found that by the time the men were in their late 70s those who had regularly eaten the most vegetables over the previous decades were 17% less likely to have moderate cognitive problems and 34% less likely to have more extensive cognitive problems than men whose diets contained less vegetables.

But that’s not all, according to dementia Australia eating plenty of Vegetables is an effective way of reducing risk factors for dementia, additionally in the Maimi Miller study it was also noted that out of the men who ate the most vegetables (six servings per day) only 6.6% had poor cognitive function compared to 7.9%who ate the least amount of vegetables (2 servings a day).

It’s evident that vegetables have a positive effect on cognitive function later in life but what do vegetables do for young people and what happens if young people don’t eat enough vegetables?

A Canadian study found that 15-17 years olds who regularly eat a high amount of vegetables had better mental health than their peers and higher school performance and participants also recorded feeling ‘fresher’ and healthier. A swedish study also showed that children in years 2 and 3 who ate a healthy diet (including lots of vegetables) had a better reading ability then their peers with a poor diet and and the children with a good diet also did better on standardized tests, finally, children who eat vegetables regularly have been to known to have more advanced social skills and a heightened learning ability.

Low vegetable consumption among children has been known to lead to constipation, dietary issues and vitamin deficiencies (which often require medically prescribed supplements) and a ten year old boy went blind after consuming very little vegetables throughout his childhood. Children who don’t eat vegetables often are unhappier than their peers and are at a higher risk of developing obesity later in life.

The case for vegetables is strong, vegetables are especially powerful when eaten in a balanced diet and can prevent a number of health problems. While we may not know exactly how neurodegenerative disorders and other diseases are caused, we do know a good diet and vegetables can help prevent these conditions. I don’t want to sound like your parents, but eat your greens, your brain will thank you for it.

Featured image retrieved from: https://healthline.com


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