I was talking to one of the charm last night about an interesting session she attended about the MIND diet. If you don’t know about it, it’s a diet that was designed to assist in the prevention of dementia. If you would like to know more about it, you can check it out here. It’s fascinating to me, because I’ve always believed that food is medicine, and I’ve definitely preferred to find a nutritional solution versus a chemical one, when such a solution was available.
As a person living with a brain injury, I will tell you that the first thing I modified in my life as I started down the road to recovery, was my diet. I trusted friends and family who did a little research for me into what foods would help ‘boost’ my brain. I incorporated those into my diet, and I still rely on them today as my staples. The big ten, I would say are the following:
Blueberries (and other berries)
Fatty Fish (salmon, tuna, herring)
Pumpkin Seeds (and flax seed and chia seed)
Broccoli (and other cruciferous vegetables)
Kale (and other leafy greens)
For sure if you want to know more about brain foods, you can click on each of them to read a bit more. None of this information is controversial, but I should state here that I'm not a dietician, I'm not a nutritionist, and I'm not a doctor. I am a person who has a significant brain injury, I believe in the power of food, and I believe we can all inform ourselves. So click on the links and decide for yourself.
Anyway, back to my story: at some point in the first little bit of my injury, I had to spend a little time with Big Tuna’s mom because Big Tuna had to go out of town for work. I was pretty easy to care for, I didn’t say much, didn’t do much, and I slept a lot. But at some point in my visit with her, we ended up getting food from a café that served something called a “cosmic cookie”. They were these huge muffin-type cookies that were jam packed with all kinds of things. Basically, a hybrid protein ball/granola bar. I didn’t eat one (long story) but the idea of it stuck with me, and eventually, as my mobility and ability started to improve, I took a crack at making them.
A little bit of trial and error later (and I will confess, I’m really bad at cooking, I mix up ingredients, I forget things, I double things, it’s a struggle), I came up with this recipe for my own version of the cosmic cookie. They have a few of the items on my brain food list in them, and they are a quick and easy snack to grab when I'm having a tough time putting something together to eat.
If you try it out, let me know. They live in the freezer in our house, and I don’t even thaw them (although if you do, 5 seconds in the microwave will do the trick).
(makes approximately 30 cookies)
¾ cup coconut oil melted and slightly cooled
1-1/4 cup unsweetened almond or oat milk, room temperature
2-1/4 cups rolled oats
1 cup spelt or sorghum flour
1 cup almond or all purpose flour
1 cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds
1 cup pumpkin seeds
½ cup shredded coconut
¼ cup chia seeds
¼ cup ground flax seed
½ cup brown or yellow sugar
1 TBSP cinnamon
2-1/4 tsp sea salt
Package of chocolate chips (I use dark, or break up a dark chocolate bar)
¼ cup raisins
¼ cup molasses
Put all dry ingredients in a large bowl. Combine the wet ingredients in a small bowl with a whisk then add to the dry. Stir until well combined.
Using a 1/3 cup measure, scoop onto parchment lined baking sheets. Press down slightly to flatten and bake at 350 for 28-32 minutes, alternating sheets halfway through.
Let cool on sheets 2-3 minutes before moving to cooling rack or counter to cool completely.
Store in fridge or freezer.