7 Foods Rich in Luteolin, the Brain-Boosting Flavonoid Linked to Combating Inflammation and Anxiety

Chronic irritation is a root explanation for numerous ailments. Whereas any variety of issues can set off irritation within the physique—suppose stress, air pollution, insufficient sleep, smoking or extreme alcohol consumption, and so forth—the excellent news is that there’s an abundance of vitamins that may assist to maintain irritation in examine. One such nutrient to prioritize is luteolin, which exists in quite a lot of plant-based meals sources.

To find why luteolin is such a powerhouse in terms of defending your thoughts and physique from the damaging results of irritation, we tapped Uma Naidoo, MD—a Harvard-trained dietary psychiatrist, skilled chef, dietary biologist, and writer of the nationwide and worldwide bestseller, That is Your Mind on Meals—for her insights. Plus: seven meals with luteolin she recommends most.

What’s luteolin?

Dr. Naidoo begins out by saying that luteolin is a standard flavonoid discovered in lots of fruits, veggies, and herbs. “Flavonoids are a sort of antioxidant—particularly a polyphenol—that helps plant cells defend themselves towards quite a lot of environmental or situational stressors,” she says. Whenever you eat plant-based meals that comprise them, flavonoids flex their antioxidant talents by defending cells from injury attributable to oxidative stress and irritation. “Particularly, luteolin has been proven to have sturdy antioxidant and anti inflammatory results in people,” Dr. Naidoo provides.

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How luteolin advantages your well being

The vast majority of luteolin’s advantages could be chalked as much as its anti-inflammatory results, which work wonders to advertise well being and well-being throughout the board. “Luteolin is related to a discount in mind fog, lowered stress and signs of tension, improved reminiscence, and lowered threat of cognitive decline,” Dr. Naidoo says. “It has additionally been tied to a lowered threat of coronary heart illness and improved cardiovascular well being—doubtless attributable to its inflammation-lowering results in our blood vessels—and has additionally been implicated in improved most cancers therapy because it has antitumor properties.”

Merely put, luteolin is an overachieving antioxidant that helps to sharpen your cognitive acuity, increase psychological well being, and stave off the potential of creating or exacerbating some fairly severe well being points—so it’s smart to get extra of it in your food plan, stat.

The most effective meals with luteolin, in response to a dietary psychiatrist

1. Parsley

Parsley is one among Dr. Naidoo’s favourite herbs, because it’s a key supply of micronutrients that promote neurological well being, with luteolin (and folate) chief amongst them. “Parsley might help to boost psychological health, mind well being, power ranges, and general cognition,” she explains, including that she loves topping this herb on salads and loading up on parsley-rich chimichurri with grass-fed steak, grilled tofu, or cauliflower.

2. Radicchio

This purple leafy vegetable is one other nice supply of luteolin, making it an excellent possibility to make use of as a base for salads and even to substitute for wraps and tortillas. “Its leaves resemble little boats, so I like to make wholesome tacos by stuffing a radicchio leaf with different chopped veggies, avocado, and a clear protein, seasoned with cumin and oregano and a burst of recent squeezed lime,” Dr. Naidoo shares. Taco Tuesday with a aspect of brain-boosting, heart-healthy advantages, anybody?

3. Inexperienced bell peppers

Apart from being wealthy in luteolin, inexperienced bell peppers additionally pack many different bioactive compounds “that exhibit antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, immunosuppressive and immunostimulant properties, and antidiabetic, antitumoral and neuroprotective actions,” per a 2021 evaluation within the medical journal Molecules. Dr. Naidoo advises consuming inexperienced bell peppers both “uncooked and chopped into a colourful salad, or grilled on colourful skewers alongside different seasonal veggies.” Bonus factors go to those that add these colourful peppers to the radicchio tacos above.

4. Chicory greens

Whereas I’m conversant in chicory because of New Orleans–fashion espresso (which entails roasting, grinding, and brewing the basis of the plant), Dr. Naidoo says that their greens could be integrated into meals just like different leafy greens. Nonetheless, she cautions that they’ve a strong taste profile, so she presents a number of tricks to take pleasure in them with out overwhelming your palate. “I like to recommend including chicory greens to soups or stews, or sautéing them in avocado oil for a flavorful aspect dish,” she advises.

5. Celery

Whether or not you favor your celery uncooked, cooked, or juiced, this versatile veggie might help you increase your consumption of anti-inflammatory luteolin. Dr. Naidoo mentions it’s a staple in lots of nutritious soup recipes (in reality, I’m slow-cooking a hearty rooster soup loaded with chopped stalks of it proper now), and that it additionally pairs properly with hummus or almond butter for a wholesome, hydrating, and crunchy snack.

6. Pumpkin

As if we wanted another reason to like this autumn dietary staple, pumpkin additionally occurs to be an excellent supply of luteolin. “I like roasting pumpkin and pureeing it right into a warming soup with earthy spices like cinnamon and clove,” says Dr. Naidoo. Within the off season, you might also need to snack on a handful of pumpkin seeds or combine them into any variety of recipes, as they comprise small quantities of this inflammation-busting flavonoid.

7. Kohlrabi

Final on Dr. Naidoo’s go-to checklist of luteolin meals is kohlrabi, a cruciferous veggie comparable in style to broccoli stems. “Kohlrabi is a favourite vegetable of mine; I like to scrub it and minimize up items to munch on,” she shares. You too can combine it into salads or take pleasure in it steamed, stir-fried, or grilled as a part of bigger meals.

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