We learnt the basics of our brain functions when we were in the 5th grade and were highly fascinated by what we had just learnt. There are certain things that we still do not know, or may have forgotten about the most wonderful and incredible part of our body.
The brain is the only organ in the body that can control cognition, motor skills, sensory skills, and every other bodily function. Without any questions being the smartest organ in the body. Did you know, every minute 750-1000 ml of blood is carried to the brain, which provides it with all the nutrients and oxygen that is required to fire-up neuron synapses.
Factors such as age, unhealthy lifestyle habits, poor food choices, and stress tend to cause the brain to get tired and shut down. This is not a good sign when it comes to the most nutrient-dense organ of the body.
1. Exercising is one of the most significant steps that one can take to improve their neural health. Exercises such as aerobics, dancing, nature hike and so on can help improve the brains functions; by enhancing the energy produced by the mitochondria, providing mental challenges, and relieving stress levels. Meditation puts our mind into Zen mode, by increasing the number of grey cells, reducing stress and anxiety, and improving concentration.
2. Ever wonder why you feel happy when you eat your favourite food? That is because there is a second brain that exists in our body: that is the gut. The brain and the gut are directly linked by the Vagus nerve. If the gut receives healthy food, the brain knows and if the gut receives unhealthy food, the brain receives warning signs.
i) Consuming foods that are rich in healthy fats (HDL cholesterol) helps in increasing the brain cells.
ii) HDL cholesterol may be found in foods such as salmon, nuts, and seeds. These are high in omega-3 fatty acids.
iii) Vitamin D, vitamin B12, and magnesium consumption are essential for cerebral health.
iv) Switching up foods that contain high levels of sugar with complex carbohydrates such as potatoes help in sustaining mental energy.
Dehydration is the body’s biggest enemy. It reduces the water content in the body by 2% and may cause memory loss, in addition to which being dehydrated for 90 minutes can lead to the shrinking of grey cells. Drinking water can help detox the body and remove all the chemicals, pesticides, and heavy metals before they reach our brain. Did you know that dehydration can cause Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other motor neuron diseases?
Addiction is another thing that tends to affect the reward centre, which is why it is highly discouraged. Alcohol, nicotine, and illicit drug consumption increases the dopamine levels in the brain leading to addiction. Being addicted to any of these can impact us physiologically and psychologically.
3. Neuroplasticity is the brain’s unique ability to coin new connections. Learning new skills or languages, challenging your brain and by socializing we can enhance the formations of new neuron connections in the brain.
Now that we know all the basics and advanced facts on how amazing the powerhouse of our body is, it is time that we put all these points at work. Following these steps can enhance our daily lives, learning abilities, and press the pause button on neurodegenerative diseases.