Posted on : January 9th, 2020
Did you know that walnuts have been considered good for brain health since ancient times? As far back as 23-79 CE, there was a concept called the Doctrine of Signatures. By using the same tools of observation and trial and error that scientists are taught to use, early healers looked for various characteristics in nature to show them what they needed to know. They noted the plant’s “signature” growing style and its signature color and taste. They noted whether a plant had a preferred habitat and growing companions and, most importantly, whether it looked like a part of the body it was likely to heal.
None of this makes sense to most people these days but sometimes the Doctrine of Signatures actually works. For example, walnuts in the shell look like a brain in a skull. The nut is wrinkled like a brain and even presents itself in two halves like the right and left hemispheres of a brain. One English naturalist, William Coles, has been ridiculed through the ages because he actually recommended mixing walnuts with wine and placing the mixture on the top of a person’s head to cure brain maladies. That is a pretty laughable suggestion. However, modern science has actually discovered that there is real value in eating walnuts for brain health!
It turns out that walnuts have a high concentration of DHA, a type of Omega-3 fatty acid that has been shown to protect brain health in newborns and improve cognitive performance in adults. It can even prevent or improve age-related cognitive declines. Because walnuts have more DHA than any other nut they have gained a reputation for being the best nut for brain health. Only a quarter cup can provide almost the entire recommended allowance of DHA for an entire day.
Walnuts also contain polyunsaturated fat, polyphenols and vitamin E that appear to reduce oxidative damage and inflammation in your brain. In a 10-month study of Alzheimer’s disease, mice who were fed walnuts as 6–9% of their calories had significant improvements in learning skills, memory and anxiety reduction. This is just an animal study, of course, but should you wish to experiment on yourself (it won’t do any harm), 6-9% of calories for people would be equal to 1–1.5 ounces of walnuts. That’s about a handful per day.
Concerned about age-related memory loss? Add to the research by tossing a few walnuts on your oatmeal for breakfast or in a salad every day for a few months and see if it works!
Maisie Jane’s California Sunshine Products, Inc. was founded on strong beliefs and passion for offering unique, flavorful, top-quality, nut products. At Maisie Jane’s we strongly believe in earth-friendly practices that start on our family owned and operated orchards. We use Organic farming practices and continue in the process by using all-natural ingredients with no preservatives or GMOs. And we believe in honest, friendly and helpful customer relations at all levels. We take pride in every task, every day, with every person.