We’ve talked about a lot of supplements here. I thought you might want to know how I’d rank them in order of importance. Keep in mind, most of these are nutrients that we need to function normally but are often deficient in. Everything is completely natural.
With modern farming techniques and depleted soil, it’s tough to get the nutrients our bodies need these days that were abundant 100 years ago. It wasn’t easy to narrow it down to just the top 10 brain supplements. There are a few more than could help us as well. I’ll mention them as honorable mentions.
I’ve done a great deal of research on all of the top 10 brain supplements and also used them. All of these are considered important for brain function and many can be used for preventing or helping dementia and Alzheimer’s. I ranked them on how critical they are for brain function, proven effectiveness, as well as low risk of side effects so you can know what’s most important to start with. Let’s get started!
- Turmeric/Curcumin Turmeric is a food source and found in a lot of Indian curry dishes. It’s also used in dill pickles. Not only is it a great antioxidant and anti-inflammatory but it’s shown to help with depression too. And, it helps to clear amyloid plaques in the brain before you even know you have them. Amyloid plaques are found in patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia. This is my #1 of the top 10 brain supplements.
- Choline It was a toss-up for the #1 spot between turmeric and choline. Choline is a critical component of brain function. We have cholinergic nerves in several of our systems, including the brain, and when we don’t have enough choline making acetylcholine, the cholinergic nerves can’t function well. But what you notice with a choline supplement is your brain is on overdrive and you feel sharp. It was found that choline can actually help prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia. Check out the full article by clicking on the Choline link.
- Magnesium When we are low on magnesium, we are at risk for oxidative stress. Magnesium takes on a preventive role in the brain. It helps with fatigue, brain fog, anxiety, depression, digestive issues and constipation, memory problems, migraines, and the list goes on. The estimates are that 80% of the population is low on magnesium. That’s staggering! You may want to read the full article by clicking on the Magnesium link.
- DHA (Omega 3) Omega 3 fatty acids are a building block for the brain. DHA, especially, is critical for a healthy aging brain. It actually helps improve memory, learning, and verbal fluency. DHA is also a component in every cell in the body and is great for every bodily function. But researchers found that people with Alzheimer’s disease have lower amounts of DHA in their brains and livers while EPA is elevated. You might want to read the full article. Click on the DHA (Omega 3) link for more.
- MCT Oil MCT stands for medium-chain triglycerides. This is brain food. Our brains are made of mostly lipids (fat) so we do need it for our brains to function. It provides immediate energy to our brains and bodies. You might want to read the article about the Best Diet for Your Brain as well to understand all that MCT Oil can do for you. It is a good fat for us.
- Vitamin D Vitamin D is included because it has antioxidant properties, is imperative for immune function, and also affects our levels of testosterone, estrogen and human growth hormones. When low on this ‘prohormone’, we are at risk of depression, getting sick more often, and fatigue. Yes, we get it from the sun but it is estimated that 1 billion people in the world have Vitamin D deficiency. Those living near the equator are the only ones who get adequate Vitamin D. The widespread use of sunscreen (which is great to use) also filters out Vitamin D. It also works with magnesium, so you’ll want to know more about that. You might want to read the full article to get the full story on Vitamin D. (Click on the Vitamin D link).
- Probiotics Did you know our gut and brains are connected? It’s true. You may have read my article, What Is The Gut and Brain Connection. So the vagus nerve, one of the biggest nerves in our bodies, connects the brain and gut. When something affects our brain, it affects our gut too. If our gut isn’t doing well, it affects our brain and our mood. It’s pretty fascinating. Probiotics help maintain balance and gut health so our brains function better, too. You may want to read the full article about the gut and brain connection.
- Alpha Lipoic Acid Like some of the others, Alpha Lipoic Acid is an antioxidant. It helps reduce inflammation in the body, which is responsible for many of our modern ailments, including brain degeneration. There are many benefits, but specifically for the brain, it may slow memory loss in people with Alzheimer’s. It also lowers blood sugar. Spikes in blood sugar seem connected with brain degeneration. You might want to read the full article on Alpha Lipoic Acid to learn more of the facts. You can click on the Alpha Lipoic Acid link.
- Panax Ginseng Panax ginseng is a huge brain booster. It helps improve thinking, concentration, memory and is used by Alzheimer’s patients. Researchers found Alzheimer’s patients have improved mental performance after taking it for 12 weeks. It also gives you energy, not like the stimulant kind, just more stamina. However, it is suggested to not eat or drink caffeinated beverages if taking Panax ginseng. You might get more than you bargained for. It also boosts the immune system, sexual function, and seems to help with cancer as well. I recommend you read the full article. I love this supplement.
- Bacopa Monnieri Bacopa is an ancient herbal Ayurvedic medicine, also known as Brahmi. Extensive research is happening with Bacopa for its brain-boosting powers. Many recent studies show its effectiveness for working memory, short-term memory, improvement in memory and lots more. It’s also an adaptogen and helps you to relax. I enjoy taking it in the evening for relaxing before bedtime. Bacopa is fantastic for anxiety. Because of all the recent research, I have a feeling we’ll be seeing Bacopa in the next dementia or Alzheimer’s drug. But that’s my own thought. It has been getting a lot of attention in the science world.
There are The Top 10 Brain Supplements chosen for importance in brain function, proven effectiveness, and lowest risk of side effects. I hope you can add these to your brain arsenal today. Don’t wait to get started…
I also like Acetyl l-Carnitine and Lion’s Mane mushrooms. However, they have a risk for people with certain conditions, like bipolar disorder. I do give them honorable mention, though.
Thank you so much for reading today. If you have any comments, experience with these supplements, or questions, please post in the Comments section below. Have a very wellbrain day!
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Hi and thanks for this informativw and timely article.
Indeed the health benefits of turmeric on the mind are well documented but I had not known of Choline in the past.
What are some natural sources of Choline? I have been taking vitamin supplements for a number of years but would like to find something that encompasses a number of the brain supplements that you have mentioned here. What would you recommend?
Thanks for commenting, Marketa. Here is a link to a multivitamin that also supports brain health, found at Vitacost.
The link to the Choline article goes over the foods that contain choline here: Does Choline Help Prevent Dementia and Alzheimer’s? You’ll notice that food alone doesn’t have enough for the recommended amounts we actually need.
This is a great post that has addressed the very best in the aspect of having supplements that can help the brain to maximize potentials in performances. Though I have take several supplements but the best for me personally would be between probiotics and curcumin/turmeric. When I made use of them, they works excellently well. Hence, I feel a need to share my personal opinion to helping others decide too
That’s great you are using supplements and found benefits. 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing.
Hi! I have been researching about how Omega 3 can help our brain and I’m glad to find it listed in your top 10 brain supplements. The most important feature I have been seeing over and over again on each related post I’ve read is that it improves memory. It’s interesting that in patients with Alzheimer’s disease, DHA is in lower amounts than it should.
Thanks for reading, Ann. It really is interesting about the Alheimer’s patients levels. Just goes to show it makes a difference.