Some studies have linked sugar intake to improved short-term memory. Until recently, experts claimed that the brain works optimally with 25 g of blood glucose, about the same amount contains a banana. However, recent articles have concluded that people with better glucose tolerance have better memory performance.
This situation is more important for people with diabetes who develop insulin resistance, which prevents them from tolerating glycemia well. Therefore, the body has very effective mechanisms that can produce glucose from proteins and fatty acids to maintain blood sugar levels. In this way, the brain receives the right amount of glucose, providing effective mental performance.
On the other hand, studies have shown that hydration plays an important role in cognitive activity. Therefore, a person who has even the slightest dehydration will receive lower scores for skills related to memory, concentration, attention, etc.
Refined sugar: worse than complex carbohydrates?
Some articles claim that the consumption of refined sugar leads to short-term memory loss after consumption. Studies have also shown that sugar consumption can sometimes even lead to cognitive impairment and the development of complex diseases.
On the other hand, the incidence of ADHD is higher in adolescents who consume a lot of saturated fat and refined sugar, compared with those who follow healthier diets.
Foods that improve mental performance
Although simple sugar can negatively affect cognitive function, other nutrients can improve brain function. One example is caffeine in moderation, which is a natural stimulant and helps strengthen and maintain brain health.
Also, nitrites, found in foods such as beets, increase vasodilation and, consequently, blood flow to the brain. The main consequence of this is greater access to nutrients to the brain and improved cognitive function.
Also, some vitamins, such as vitamin C, can have a positive effect on mental ability and health. These vitamins can help prevent cognitive impairment, for example, in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
Does sugar really improve mental abilities?
Glucose is the main source of fuel for the brain. However, the consumption of sugary foods is not required to ensure proper brain function. There are very effective mechanisms in the body that provide the brain with enough glucose to support brain function.
In fact, consuming large amounts of simple sugar can lead to impaired cognitive function and the development of complex diseases.
So, if you want to improve your mental abilities and brain function, it is better to eat healthy, balanced food. Also, if you need a quick boost of mental abilities, you can eat foods rich in vitamin C and nitrites.
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