Alton Brown actively feeds his brain with these lifestyle choices, interview

Alton Brown for Neurvia, Neuriva
Alton Brown for Neurvia, Neuriva /

When Alton Brown shares his insight on food, many people listen. Over the years, the celebrated food personality has explained food science in a way that had people hungry for more, has broken down the unfamiliar ingredients in an Iron Chef dish, and has delighted social media with the adventures of the beloved Scabigail. Although Brown has endeared himself to many people, the quick response and impressive fact recall cannot stand alone. For him, feeding his brain with balanced lifestyle choices is important.

Recently, Brown partnered with Neuriva to offer a tasty, yet nutritionally dense, recipe that is meant to help support brain function. Although eating this recipe may not instantly guarantee membership to MENSA, the reality is that healthy eating and balanced lifestyle choices can help to supplement an overall good feeling.

In addition to enjoying some delicious recipes, Brown mentioned that two other factors help to foster strong brain function. Specifically, he said, “we cannot overemphasize the importance of exercise and sleep. Those two things form the bookends that everything else goes into.”

Brown went on to explain his concept of exercise. Specifically, he said, “I will not get on an exercise bike, but I will ride a bicycle. I will swim. I will paddle board. I will find ways to keep my body active to feed my brain.”

In turn, sleep is just as vital for Brown. While he admitted that it is “hard to get eight hours of sleep, my brain just doesn’t work that way,” he is working to get at least six or seven hours of sleep a night. Those two elements combined with balanced food choices make him feel that his brain is working better.

Throughout the discussion with Brown, a particular concept seemed to flavor the conversation. For Brown, he mentioned that it might be time for people to stop thinking about what “we shouldn’t have” and think about the flip side, what do we need.

That being said, Brown prefers to avoid the negative connotations when it comes to food descriptions. Specifically, Brown said, “I refuse to associate guilt with pleasure.”

He went on to explain his thought process. “I’m not going to eat the whole pint of ice cream because that wouldn’t be right, and it would be gone tomorrow. But, I don’t think of pleasures are guilty. They might be unexpected or unusual. I might really like the way that Captain Crunch cereal tears up the roof of your mouth, but that’s just me.”

Although there is humor mixed into his explanation, his approach is one that many people can appreciate. Life is too short to avoid certain foods because someone has put a questionable adjective in front of a particular category. Just like his Captain Crunch analogy, it might not always be an easy choice but if it brings you joy it is the right one for you.

The biggest takeaway from this conversation with Alton Brown is a simple one. Lifestyle choices are personal, far from a one-size-fits-all and can evolve over time. But, for those people who want to score well on that Alton Brown Live: Beyond The Eats culinary credentials quiz it might be time to find a way to support that brain health.