Improve Your Memory!
- A healthy lifestyle can support brain health and even encourage the brain to grow new neurons, a process known as neuroplasticity.
- Your brain’s hippocampus, i.e. the memory center, regenerates throughout your entire lifetime, when you give it the right tools
- Lifestyle factors that may improve memory and promote neurogenesis include exercise, eating Real food, and getting good rest and sleep
- Other memory builders include: avoiding multitasking, learning a new skill, playing brain games and using mnemonics to help you remember information
And if you are really serious about improving memory and cognitive function below are 3 important actions for brain health.
- Vitamin D: Activated vitamin D receptors increase nerve growth in the brain, and researchers have also located metabolic pathways for vitamin D in the hippocampus and cerebellum of the brain, areas that are involved in planning, processing of information, and the formation of new memories. In older adults, research has shown that low vitamin D levels are associated with poorer brain function, and increasing levels may help keep older adults mentally fit. Appropriate sun exposure is all it takes to keep your levels where they need to be for healthy brain function. If this is not an option, a safe tanning bed is the next best alternative, followed by a vitamin D3 supplement.
- Intermittent Fasting: Contrary to popular belief, the ideal fuel for your brain is not glucose but ketones, which is the fat that your body mobilizes when you stop feeding it carbs and introduce coconut oil and other sources of healthy fats into your diet. A 1-day fast can help your body to “reset” itself, and start to burn fat instead of sugar. Further, it will help you to reduce your overall calorie consumption, which promotes brain cell growth and connectivity. Do it, I have been fasting 1 day for all of my adult life, and my memory amazes me.
- Gut Health: Our gut is a “2nd brain,” and gut bacteria transmits information to your brain via the vagus nerve, the 10th cranial nerve that runs from your brain stem into your enteric nervous system, e.g. the nervous system of our gastrointestinal tract. There is a close connection between abnormal gut flora and abnormal brain development, and just as we have neurons in our brains, we have neurons in the gut including neurons that produce neurotransmitters like serotonin, which is also found in your brain and is linked to mood. Our gut health can impact our brain’s function, psyche, and behavior, they are interconnected and interdependent in a number of different ways. In addition to avoiding sugar, 1 of the best ways to support gut health is to consume beneficial bacteria. I eat fermented vegetables daily, because they deliver extraordinarily high levels of beneficial bacteria. Most people are not aware that in a healthy serving of sauerkraut, with just 2 to 3 oz we get the equivalent of nearly 100 capsules of the highest-potency probiotic you can buy. It’s clearly one of the most cost-effective alternatives. I eat sauerkraut every day.
The Choline-Brain Connection
Choline is an essential nutrient our body makes in small amounts. However, we must consume it through your diet to get enough. In adults, choline helps keep our cell membranes functioning properly, plays a role in nerve communications, prevents the buildup of homocysteine in your blood, and reduces chronic inflammation.
Eggs and meat are 2 of the best dietary sources of choline; if a vegan or vegetarian who does not consume any animal foods, you may be at risk of deficiency and may want to consider supplementation.
Eat healthy, Be healthy, Live lively
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