Wednesday, September 15

Brain Food: The Thinkfood Cookbook Is Here

NPR recently caused a brouhaha -- ooh, I love that word -- when they posted the article, "Food For Thought: Meat-Based Diet Made Us Smarter."

According to anthropologists, about 2.3 million years ago, humans began "dining with dogs," or at least scavenging the same carcasses. Because meat has more calories and fat, our brains, which are high energy users, responded well to it. While our brains enlarged, our guts shrank, allowing us to spend more time on higher brain activities like making better tools.

This doesn't mean that vegetarians are dumber. It does, however, mean that they may have less energy than meat-eaters. Fortunately, there are many brain-healthy foods for all types of eaters ranging from carnivores to vegans. Some of the best brain-healthy foods include omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods such as salmon, walnuts, and flaxseed; antioxidant-packed foods such as berries and crucifers; and whole grains such as barley and oats.

So if you're looking to eat your way to a smarter you, then consider getting yourself a copy of the newly released cookbook, Thinkfood: Recipes for Brain FitnessPosit Science (a leader in brain training software) joined forces with 50 bloggers, including me, to create this cookbook, featuring 50 unique, delicious, brain-healthy recipes ranging from appetizers to desserts. You can also sign up for their free email Recipe of the Week campaign; each Wednesday you'll receive a brain-healthy recipe, meet the blogger who created it, and get tips about brain-fitness foods.

Brain-healthy recipe: Quick Italian Tuna and Olive Pasta; photo by Posit Science

My family has been eating Quick Italian Tuna and Olive Pasta for as long as I can remember, not because tuna is high in brain-boosting omega-3 fatty acids, which it is, but because it's simple, delicious, and Italian. Tuna is also rich in both B-vitamins which help improve your energy and memory and tryptophan which helps you sleep.

Since my parents will be reading this post, I have a feeling my mom will be making Quick Italian Tuna and Olive Pasta a lot more often. Mensa better get ready for the Russo's.

Here are other brain-healthy recipes from Food Blogga you might enjoy:  
Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Pears
Grilled Shrimp and Avocado Salad
Orange and Ginger Glazed Planked Salmon
Shrimp, Pineapple, and 7 Whole Grain Pilaf Salad
Sicilian Sardine and Broccoli Rabe Pasta


Joanne said...

That does sound like one quality pasta. My grandparents are in their 90s and, though their memory is basically gone, they are still in pretty good health, all things considered. And I can't help but think it's because they ate my grandmother's food all those years. Never fast food. Ever.

The Italian Dish said...

"Dining with dogs." Love that! I'll have to check that book out. Doesn't ever hurt to have more brain cells.

Johanna GGG said...

sounds like an interesting idea for choosing food - but I love hearing that your family chooses brain-friendly food because it is full of tradition and flavour - gives the rest of us hope that it is really not so hard to feed the brain

We Are Not Martha said...

This looks and sounds amazing and I think I need to make it some time in the near future. Anything that could make me smarter is OK by me!


Susan from Food Blogga said...

joanne-I think you're right. Our grandparents ate all foods but in moderation. They also never ate fast foods and didn't really engage in mindless eating like we do today.

italiandish-Thanks! Nope. Every little bit helps.

johanna-That's well said. It really is easy to eat healthfully when food has personal meaning.

sues-Yup. It's hard to say "no" to being smarter. ;)