My #momsays (and perhaps yours does too) that eating almonds can boost your memoryUpdated on: 16 February 2020, 13:32 pm IST
I am forgetful, but that might be an understatement. Because I not only forget what I had memorized the night before on the day of the exam, but I also go blank on lines I’d been practicing for the video shoot at work. And let’s not even get me started on names and faces because I can’t recall who all I met at the party last night.
You might be cringing while reading about this, but thanks to my mother’s undeniable biological link with me, she was putting up with it–up until my forgetfulness started extending its claws into what she asked me to do.
You know how nothing triggers an Indian mother more than a child (who is actually an adult) leaving the fan or lights on after exiting the room? Or forgetting to get the free dhaniya with the ghiya, tinda, lauki from the vegetable vendor? The worst yet, not turning the gas off after the milk is boiled—despite her mother’s clear instructions!
Yup, every Indian kid ever–but especially me because I would forget that she had asked me to do something in the first place.
My forgetfulness made my mom intervene
I remember how there wouldn’t be a single day when mom wouldn’t stuff my mouth with soaked almonds—no matter how late I was getting for school.
I thought my condition had become better when mom decided to do away with the torture eating badam each morning. However, my repeated forgetfulness made her return to her old, overpowering self and thus, the constant nagging to stay away from social media and eat almonds every day began.
While limiting my phone usage eliminated any distractions, soaked almonds were apparently fed to sharpen my memory—just like the old times.
Did it really work?
The fact that my mom had to literally remind me to eat soaked almonds every day—despite all those years of stuffing my mouth with ‘em through childhood—made me doubt the credibility of this nuskha very much.
Now, I don’t know whether to attribute my new-found alertness to the maturity that comes with ageing, to the fact that I was spending less time on my phone, or simply to those soaked almonds—but there was an improvement.
When you doubt mom, prepare to face the storm
That’s just me being a bit dramatic, but you get the point, right? Try to discredit or second guess your mom’s remedy and you’ll be poked full of holes with magical results and solid scientific proof backing her claim strongly.
In this case too, a study published in the International Journal of Pharmacology, found that repeated administration of overnight soaked almonds taken on an empty stomach can improve brain function and boost memory. This is because almonds are rich in vitamin E, which is a known brain-function-enhancer and soaking the almonds simply enriches the vitamin E content of these nuts.
But this doesn’t mean that you can’t reap the memory-boosting benefits of almonds in case you miss your morning dose. According to a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, eating almonds at lunchtime can also improve your afternoon memory—just when your lethargy can make you forget important things.
While the magnesium content in almonds can help you fight fatigue and be more alert, nutrients such as niacin, thiamine, and folate can improve brain function.
In fact, a study published in the journal Brain Research Bulletin concluded that almonds prevented brain and memory-related problems like amnesia and boosted the levels of acetylcholine in the brain, a chemical that allows your brain to send signals.
That’s not it. Apart from benefitting the brain, almonds are also proven to boost heart health, help in muscle building, and aid weight loss.
Trust me we need this remedy to make it through adulthood and beyond–more than we ever needed it to survive childhood.