The food-brain link is nothing new. Doctors have long believed that brain-based nutrition holds the secret for firing up your mental energy, guarding against mental fog, and even fighting off disease. And thanks to new research, published in The Journal of Nutrition, Health, and Aging, scientists have narrowed down the four most important food groups for stopping cognitive decline with age.

Conducted on almost 9,000 middle-age to elderly participants in Canada, the study found those who consumed less fruits, vegetables, nuts, and pulses (beans, lentils, and peas), were more likely to experience cognitive decline. Meaning: Your berries, avocado, black beans, and nut butters all serve a purpose in strengthening the power of your brain.

In order to reach these results, scientists used a cognitive indicator known as verbal fluency: at test that asks you to list off as many words as possible within a given category. Being single, socioeconomically disadvantaged, and having hypertension also put people at greater cognitive risk.

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