We all know that what we eat has an impact on our physical and mental health but rarely do we stop and think about how this also applies to what we drink. Sure, we know the obvious negative effects of soda, but what we drink in general is equally as important as what we ingest when it comes to our brain health.
Did you know, for example, that drinking tea regularly can help prevent Alzheimer’s and other neurological degenerative diseases? Or that certain spices like cardamom and star anise used in chai tea can alleviate symptoms of depression and fight off free radicals?
Many of your favorite fall beverages have benefits you don’t even know about — so raise a glass to these five healthy beverages that will boost your brain health and delight your taste buds!
This Pumpkin Spice Latte With Homemade Pumpkin Seed Milk is not only fall in a cup, it’s also a delicious beverage that can boost your brain health. How? Well, the pumpkin seeds it contains are a great source of antioxidants and bioactive compounds that scavenge free-radicals in your brain and body, improving your immune system functions and general health. Pumpkin seeds are also rich in omega-3s fatty acids and magnesium which are both essential nutrients that play an important role in preventing neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and that can also help in treating depression.
If you want to know more about the benefits of pumpkin seeds and try out recipes using them, check out The Perfect Seed: Why Everyone Should Add Pumpkin Seeds to Their Diet and Don’t Throw Away the Seeds! Here are 12 Recipes Using Pumpkin Seeds. You can also try this Vanilla Pumpkin Seed Milk and this Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie.
This Chaga Mushroom Tea, deliciously flavored with either chai or vanilla, has amazing healing properties and beneficial effects on the brain. Chaga, also called the King of Medicinal Mushrooms, is considered a superfood because it is high in antioxidants. As such, this mushroom tea can help your body fight off the negative effects of free radicals, reduce inflammation, and boost your immune system. Phenolic compounds found in Chaga mushrooms protect against several degenerative disorders, including brain dysfunction through their antioxidant effect on free radicals in the brain.
Want to know more about the benefits of mushrooms on our health? Check out Ingredient Spotlight: Chaga, the King of Medicinal Mushrooms. If you want to try a different type of mushroom beverage, we suggest making this Chocolate Reishi Latte and this Chaga Cider.
This Goji Berry Golden Milk will quickly become your new favorite fall drink. It’s a delicious nutrient-punch that will benefit you in more ways than one. It’s packed with fresh turmeric, maca powder, cinnamon, and ginger which are all ingredients that have incredibly positive effects on the brain.
Turmeric has powerful anti-inflammatory properties that have been found to both prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease as well as mitigate negative symptoms in psychiatric disorders such as anxiety and depression. Alkaloids, a type of antioxidant found in maca, are also beneficial for the brain. These compounds were shown to have neuroprotective effects that show promise for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. How amazing is that?
Want to try out other beverages that contain these superfoods? Then check out this Energizing Turmeric Tea and this Healing Turmeric Golden Juice. You could also give this Cacao Maca Energizing Smoothie and this Ginger Elixir: An Ayurvedic Digestive Drink a go!
If you’re not a tea drinker and you want to boost your brain health, it’s time you get acquainted with this hot beverage, because it’s loaded with benefits. Whether you like herbal teas, green, black, or white, it doesn’t matter — start sipping! All varieties of teas are rich in antioxidants that have powerful effects on your brain and body. Polyphenols and epigallocatechin gallate or EGCGs (both potent antioxidants) found in green tea, can protect against neuronal damage, brain edema, and prevent cognitive decline in old age. Consuming tea regularly has also been found to improve brain connectivity and working memory.
Want to know more about the beneficial effects of tea? Then check out Tea Time: The Health Reasons Why You Should Pick Up the Habit This Fall and 5 Herbal Teas That Benefit the Body and Spirit. You can also try this Almost Instant Turmeric-Ginger Tea and this Cafe Style Matcha Tea Latte.
This homemade hemp milk comes in two flavors, so you get double the deliciousness and double the benefits! Both versions can be done under 10 minutes as the hemp seeds don’t require soaking. This creamy hemp milk is delectable on its own but it goes great with oatmeal, cereal, and fruit smoothies. Enjoy it regularly as its ingredients can boost your brain health tremendously.
Hemp seeds contain all amino-acids that our brain needs for proper functioning — these are the building blocks used to produce all neurotransmitters (neurochemical messengers neurons use to communicate). The little seeds are also rich in omega-3s which, among other things, contribute to regulating our mood and behavior — deficiency in these fatty acids are actually linked with anxiety and other psychiatric disorders. So drink up!
If you want to learn more about other beverages and foods that can help maintain your mental and physical health, check out The Health Benefits of Drinking Turmeric-Infused Golden Milk, read up on these 5 Healthy ‘Shots’ To Alkalize Your Body in the Morning, or take a look at Ginger Elixir, Turmeric Lemonade, and More: 15 Health Tonics to Start 2017 the Right Way.
Also, if you’re interested in finding more delicious and healthy beverages recipes, then we highly recommend downloading our Food Monster App, which is available for both Android and iPhone, and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 8,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to ten new recipes per day. Check it out!
Lead Image Source: Marco Verch/Flickr