Healthy MIND Diet Dinners: The first week of a new year begins and with resolutions recently made, we’re focusing on foods to help us achieve those goals. Easy, mind-healthy dinners all week.
What is the MIND Diet?
Mayo Clinic defines the MIND diet as a hybrid of two excellent eating styles, with decades of research; the DASH diet and the Mediterranean diet.
Researchers combined the two diets with a focus on foods that help boost brain health.
They say these foods have been shown to “slow brain aging by 7.5 years, and lessen the chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease.”
What to Eat on the MIND Diet
This simple formula is easy to remember and execute.
Here are the essentials:
Leafy Green Vegetables
Load up on vegetables: specifically leafy greens like kale, spinach, collards, and lettuce for best brain health. Aim to eat 6 servings a week of leafy greens with an added vegetable every day.
Berries for Treats
Studies show that blueberries and strawberries have the most impact on brain health. Eat 2 or more servings a week of these berries.
Snacking on Nuts
A handful of unsalted dry roasted or raw nuts 5 times a week.
Cooking with Olive Oil
Cook primarily with olive oil for healthy fats and avoid cooking with butter.
“Brain-healthy eating encourages consuming meat sparingly (red meat makes an appearance fewer than four times a week in the ideal MIND diet). Beans, lentils and soybeans, which pack protein and fiber, make a worthy substitute. They’ll keep you full and are rich in B vitamins, which are important for brain health.”
Seafood Once A Week
Individuals who consume at least 1 serving of fish a week scored higher on brain health and memory tests. Salmon is exceptionally good for healthy minds.
Healthy MIND Diet Dinners
Monday’s dinner is a one-pot slow cooker Ikarian Stew, packed with kale and beans. It’s simple to make, delicious, and utterly healthy. Add a side salad of leafy greens.
For Tuesday, we’re making a quick chicken quinoa bake, packed with healthy grains, spinach, and lean protein. To make dinner super quick, prep the quinoa ahead (I like to make 1-minute Instant Pot Quinoa, and have leftover chicken or turkey ready.
Wednesday’s dinner with an easy, one-pot skillet pasta recipe with brain-healthy foods. Be sure to add raw or wilted leafy greens as a side dish.
On Thursday, we’re making an easy sheet pan salmon dinner that is tender and delicious. I’m adding steamed broccoli and whole grains.
Friday’s dinner is a super delicious Mexican casserole that is packed with healthy vegetables. And large enough to make wonderful leftovers for the weekend.
The treats this week are healthy and berry-based; a blueberry smoothie and delicious breakfast quinoa.
Here’s to a new year, filled with possibilities, healthy bodies, and minds.
Have a great week!
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Healthy MIND Diet Dinners: What to Cook (Jan 3)
Monday: Slow Cooker Ikarian Stew with Black Eyed Peas and Kale
Tuesday: Southwestern Chicken Quinoa Bake with Spinach
Wednesday: Chicken Spinach Skillet Pasta
Thursday: Easy, Healthy Baked Salmon
Friday: Butternut Squash Mexican Enchilada Casserole
Treat: Banana Blueberry Smoothies and Breakfast Quinoa with Blueberries
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