A healthy nervous system is vital in the proper function of your body. It is through the nervous system that all your body functions and the actions that you perform are communicated and coordinated within the different parts of your body. Without a properly functioning nervous system, all the other systems in your body may breakdown and go haywire. This is describing the worst-case scenario that can happen with a seriously weakened nervous system. Minor conditions or diseases that are just developing in your nervous system can bring about irritation and discomfort that can hamper your normal activities. This may include pain, numbness, muscle cramps or nervous twitches. The least and simplest thing you can do to take good care of your nervous system is to eat the right foods that promote nervous system health.
Important Nutrients for a Healthy Nervous System
A few nutrients are vital in your nervous system’s efficient functions:
- Thiamin or Vitamin B1 – Sufficient vitamin B1 can prevent “pins-and-needles” sensation especially in your toes. Good sources of vitamin B1 are seafood, beef liver, beans, eggs, brewer’s yeast and sunflower seeds.
- Vitamin B6 – Lack or absence of this vitamin can lead to nerve cell communication problems. Dopamine and serotonin, two important neurotransmitters, need vitamin B6 for their production. Potatoes, bananas and chick peas are good sources of vitamin B6.
- Vitamin B12 – Not enough Vitamin B12 in your body can result in numbness and tingling in the hands and feet. Good sources of this vitamin are clams, fish, meat, eggs and dairy products.
- Copper – This mineral is vital in the production of neurotransmitters, just like vitamin B6. Lack of copper especially when severe, can result to the degeneration of the spinal cord and a gradual failure of nerve function. Oyster and liver are good sources of copper. So are spinach, kale, and other dark and leafy green vegetables, prunes and nuts.
Foods for a Healthy Nervous System
Aside from some of the foods mentioned earlier as good sources of vital nutrients for a healthy nervous system, the following are healthy foods for normal nervous system functions:
- Spinach – This highly nutritious vegetable contains lots of antioxidants that boost health and delay the aging of the brain and the nervous system.
- Whole grains – Brown rice has very high levels of vitamin B6. This vitamin neutralizes the harmful effects of homocysteines by helping protect against deterioration of the brain. Whole grains also contain magnesium, an important nutrient for the nervous system.
- Whey – It provides natural calming effect. Whey is rich in L-tryptoplan, an amino acid the body is not capable to produce. L-tryptoplan is vital in producing serotonin, a key neurotransmitter that counters depression.
- Cocoa – This food has powerful antioxidants, which prevent oxidative stress, a known cause for Alzheimer’s disease, among other neurological disorders. Cocoa is also rich in magnesium.
- Garlic – A known natural antibiotic, garlic has antioxidants that can help in preventing the aging of the brain.
By being conscious of the foods essential in the healthy functioning of your nervous system and actually including them in your regular diet, you are doing yourself a big favor.