Memory is a term used in brain functioning.

When the brain processes information which is found available for use at a later time or without conscious awareness is called memory .

But when brain is unable to carry out this function properly, different changes occur in memory which leads to various memory disorders. These include:

Alzheimer disease – It is a condition of brain that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior . It occurs in three stages: early, intermediate and late stage.

In early stage, people have mild problems in learning new information and remembering to perform routine mechanical tasks. In intermediate stage, the knowledge and skills of person become regress in reverse development order. The persons are unable to communicate their needs.

In late stage, there is consistent decrease in speech, decrease in ability to walk and the person is unable to eat or drink which results in the weight loss.  It can be due to genetic disorders or microbial toxicity including fungal toxins, bacterial toxins and aluminium and zinc toxicity .

Korsakoff syndrome- This syndrome occurs in alcoholic patients due to poor nutrition and thiamine deficiency. There is loss of neurons and myelinated nerve fibres inside the brain. The patient is unable to learn new information and suffers from memory distortions.

Transient global amnesia– It is an uncommon memory disorder in which the patient loses several to 48h of previously learned information and is unable to learn new information.

Semantic dementia– It is a rare type of degenerative disorder in which the patient is unable to memorize names, exhibit deficits in knowing single-word comprehension and non-verbal problem-solving skills.

Autobiographical memory– The patients with this disorder are able to remember new information for few minutes, days or weeks but are unable to remember their pasts such as childhood days, memories of their parents, children, spouse etc.

Parkinson’s disease– In this disease, the dopamine-producing neurons is degenerated which results in formation of Lewy bodies in place of degenerated neurons.

Dopamine is a major neurochemical messenger that promotes the function of ganglia. Therefore, Parkinson’s disease affect functions such as balance, walking, speech, handwriting, typing and other routine exercises that are controlled by mechanisms of ganglia.

Nutrition required for memory disorders

Memory disorders are also the result of improper nutrition and imbalance of diet in the lifestyle. The various nutrients which are required to cure and prevent memory diseases include:

Energy rich diet, proteins, high fiber content, vitamins like vitamin B1 (thiamine), vitamin E (tocopherol), vitamin C (ascorbic acid), vitamin D (phylloquinone),vitamin B6 (pantothenic acid); omega-3-fatty acids, antioxidants- leutin and zeaxanthin pigments.

The daily intake of these nutrients should be- protein-1-1.5 gm/kg; fiber-20-25 gm; energy- 30-45 kcal/kg; vitamin E- 400-800 I.U.; vitamin C-2000-3000 mg; leutin and zeaxanthin- 10 mg each and vitamin B1-1-2 mg

15 Superfoods for Memory

To keep the brain in normal state and working conditions, the above mentioned nutrients can be utilized in the form of superfoods.

Superfoods are the foods that contain all essential nutrients or either of them which provides benefit to health. Some of these superfoods include:

Wheat germ

Wheat germ is the richest source of vitamin E .

Vitamin E is anti oxidant which shows neuroprotective activity against free-radicals generated by 6-hydroxydopamine, a neurotoxin which lowers the effect of dopamine (neurotransmitter) in the nervous system.  Hence, wheat germ helps in the prevention of Parkinson’s disease.

Wheat germ also has the ability to prevent Alzheimer’s disease as the central nervous system has high lipid content which can lead to lipid oxidation.

Lipid oxidation results in the generation of free- radicals that can cause damage to protein and DNA of the central nervous system, thus causing gene-related Alzheimer’s disease.

Therefore, vitamin E present in wheat germ act as anti-oxidant and prevents the lipid oxidation. Wheat germ is also a good source of vitamin B1 , the availability of which is necessary for the treatment and prevention of Korsakoff syndrome .

Fish

Fish is the richest source of protein among sea foods.

Fish also contains vitamin B6 and vitamin B1 . Protein present in fish helps in the absorption of thiamine and vitamin B6 in the tissues of the individual, thus preventing the person from Korsakoff syndrome .

The amino acids found within the protein of the fish are also beneficial for prevention of Parkinson’s disease . Fish is also the richest source of omega-3-fatty acids  that provide energy and forms the major component of brain and neurons.

They maintain structure and function of the neuronal membranes, membrane associated proteins and protein complexes. These polyunsaturated fatty acids lower the cholesterol leading to increased membrane fluidity and are essential to maintain synaptic structures.

This fluidity is important in promoting the synaptic plasticity that is essential for learning, memory and to carry out other complex processes .

Therefore, fish containing essential fatty acids helps in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease by strengthening the neurons for synapsis.

Fish is also low in triglycerides i.e. low in cholesterol . Since, high cholesterol enhances the condition for Alzheimer’s disease, therefore foods having low triglyceride content decreases cholesterol and treats Alzheimer’s disease .

Avocado

Avocado is the plant root which is available in the form of powders in the market. It is a good source of vitamin E . Vitamin E is an anti-oxidant which acts as neurotransmitter against free-radicals generated by 6-hydroxydopamine, a neurotoxin which lowers the effect of dopamine (neurotransmitter) .

Hence, avocado helps in the prevention of Parkinson’s disease.

Kale

Kale is the richest source of lutein among vegetables . Lutein is an antioxidant which helps in the prevention of free-radical formation during lipid peroxidation of neurons.

It also prevents the oxidation of DNA which does not lead to mutation in genes  and helps in preventing Alzheimer’s disease.

Fortified cereals

Fortified cereals are the good source of vitamin B6 , availability of which is essential for the prevention and treatment of Korsakoff syndrome .

These cereals are also rich in vitamin E and lutein pigment . Vitamin E and lutein acts as antioxidants and prevents the formation of free-radicals formed during peroxidation of lipid rich neurons.

This helps in the prevention of mutation of genes which can occur due to oxidation of DNA by free-radicals . Thus, fortified cereals also help in the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. Fortified cereals are low in triglycerides (low in cholesterol) and also have low glycemic content i.e. 15 , which maintains the condition for prevention of Alzheimer’s disease .

Bananas

Bananas are the rich source of vitamin B6 , the availability of which is essential for the treatment or prevention of Korsakoff syndrome of memory .

Eggs

Eggs are the richest source of lutein and zeaxanthin pigments. They are also good source of vitamin D . Lutein and zeaxanthin pigments are antioxidants which scavenge the free-radicals formed during lipid-peroxidation of neurons.

Thus, they prevent the mutations in DNA. The active form of vitamin D i.e. vitamin D3  is found in eggs which is neuroprotective and acts directly or indirectly in neurons by inhibiting the formation of amyloid protein by activating macrophages .

Thus this protective role of anti-oxidants and vitamin D in eggs can help in the treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease.

Eggs are also low in triglycerides  i.e. low in cholesterol . Since, high cholesterol enhances the condition for Alzheimer’s disease; therefore foods having low triglyceride content should be consumed . Eggs also consist of vitamin B6 , which is essential for the prevention of Korsakoff syndrome of memory .

Beans

Beans consist of vitamin B1 and vitamin B6 . These vitamins are essential for the prevention and treatment of Korsakoff syndrome of memory .

Peas

Peas have low glycemic content i.e. 22 , which maintains low-blood sugar level, thus it is beneficial for improving the condition for prevention of Alzheimer’s disease . Peas are the good source of vitamin B1  which is essential for the prevention of Korsakoff syndrome of memory .

Soy milk

Soy milk is the source of protein which contains 11 gm protein . Soy milk also contains vitamin B1 . Therefore, the protein helps in the absorption of vitamin B1 and thus prevents or treats the disorders of memory caused due to deficiency of vitamin B1 .

The amino acids present in protein are essential to prevent Parkinson’s disease mainly if they are present in low concentration because high concentration of proteins does not allow the movement of levodopa (an amino acid) into the brain .

Kiwi

Kiwi is a good source of vitamin C . Vitamin C acts as an anti-oxidant and prevents the formation of free-radicals formed during lipid peroxidation of neurons.

It also prevents the mutation of genes which can occur due to oxidation of DNA by free-radicals. Vitamin C also prevents the formation of amyloid protein and acetylcholinesterase that can cause lyses of acetylcholine (neurotransmitter) .

Thus, kiwi helps in the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease.

Tofu

Tofu is the second richest source of protein that contains 20 gm protein . The protein helps in the absorption of thiamine in the tissues of an individual, which prevents or treats Korsakoff syndrome of memory .

The amino acids present in protein are essential for prevention or treatment of Parkinson’s disease. But the consumption of protein should be low in amount because high concentration of protein interferes with amino acid levodopa to be used by the brain .

Nuts

Nuts are the rich source of vitamin B6 . This vitamin is essential for the treatment of various disorders of memory like Korsakoff syndrome . Nuts are also a good source of vitamin E .

Vitamin E acts like an antioxidant which shows neuroprotective activity against free-radicals generated by 6-hydroxydopamine, a neurotoxin which lowers the effect of dopamine (neurotransmitter) in the nervous system . Hence, nuts help in the prevention and treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

The antioxidant activity of vitamin E also inhibits lipid peroxidation and formation of free radicals. Since, nervous system is high in lipid content, therefore it is prone to lipid peroxidation. It also prevents the mutation in DNA caused due to oxidation .

Nuts have low glycemic content i.e. 15 , which helps to maintain the blood-glucose level, thus balancing the condition for prevention of Alzheimer’s disease .

Nuts are also low in triglycerides (low in cholesterol) . Therefore, all these featured in nuts help in the treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease.

Meat

Meat is a good source of vitamin B1 and vitamin B6 . These vitamins are essential for the prevention and treatment of memory disorders. Thus, meat helps in the inhibition of Korsakoff syndrome of memory .

Broccoli

Broccoli is a good source of vitamin C . Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant and prevents the formation of free radicals formed due to lipid peroxidation in nervous system and prevents the mutations in genes by inhibiting oxidation of DNA, thus releasing oxidative stress.

Ascorbic acid also improves endothelial dysfunction by producing nitric oxide. Vitamin C inhibits the formation of amyloid protein and acetylcholinesterase activity that can cause lysis of acetylcholine (neurotransmitter) .

Broccoli has low glycemic content i.e. 15 , which maintains the blood-sugar level. Thus, all these features of broccoli help in the treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease

Conclusion

Brain is the most vital organ which performs all functions of the body. Loss of memory and other related disorders can interfere with the entire life style of an individual.

Therefore, it is our prime importance to give proper time and nourishment in our eating habits to keep ourselves away from these disorders.

 

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