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Top Brain Enhancing Superfoods! -- Issue #020
August 17, 2011
Top Brain Enhancing Superfoods!If you are someone who suffers from depression, insomnia, mood swings, inability to focus, lack of drive, or anxiety, then you might be interested to learn that these symptoms may indicate that your brain chemistry could be out of balance. Often the reason for this is because your brain is not receiving the nutrition it needs to perform at optimal levels. For example, if you are not getting the adequate amount of neurotransmitters in the form of amino acids you may suffer from any of the above symptoms. The research and work of Dr. Hyla Cass suggests that these problems can be corrected with the right combination of nutritional supplementation.
In addition, in today's high tech world things are moving fast and our cognitive activity is at an all time high compared to generations of the past. It has also been proven that we are not even close to tapping into our potential of brain power. Scientists and others in the psychological, sociological fields have asserted that humans use maybe 1-10 percent of their brain.
In some ways I believe that the human brain is actually evolving and expanding to interact with the world in a different way (a better one). This personally makes me want to feed it the best fuel I possible can to nourish this growth potential.
There are certain superfoods known to be especially beneficial to neurotransmitter health and brain function, performance and development. Many of these foods can be easily added to any diet or used as supplementation when appropriate.
This particular part of the body is of interest to me personally and I have done much research and study on how to not only keep it healthy, but to repair it after damage, such as a seizure or head injury.
It is important to keep our neurological systems high and clear, so that we can use our minds in more focused ways to attain our own life potential and purpose. Nurturing the mind with brain enhancing superfoods allows you to live without the use of artificial stimulants and caffeine that rob the nerves, adrenals and neurological functions over time. Balanced nutrient support may also prohibit the use of prescription medication for neurological related problems.
Here are my top brain foods that will help you achieve a healthier "state of mind" throughout your life.
TOP Superfoods for the Brain1) Essential Fatty Acids - Omega Fatty Acids, DHA, EPA - are important for maintaining healthy function of the brain and retina. DHA is a building block of tissue in the brain and retina of the eye. It helps with forming neural transmitters, such as phosphatidylserine, which is important for brain activity. In addition, the brain needs EFA's for proper neurological functioning. A deficiency in these fatty acids results in depression and reduced mental capacity. DHEA, a hormone that is produced in the adrenals, gonads and brain is important in brain development and especially important for pregnant women.
Examples: chia seeds, hemp seeds, krill oil, and flax oils
2) Lions Mane Mushroom - This medicinal mushroom was proven effective for its ability to efficiently stimulate neuron growth, improving muscle-motor response pathways in Parkinson's and repairing neurological trauma in stroke victims. In studies conducted in Japan, by Dr. Hirokazu Kawagishi, it was discovered that this mushroom stimulates the synthesis of Nerve Growth Factor (NGF).
3) Lecithin - contains the nutrient choline that is imperative for brain development of children. Choline is also important for adults and is generally only found in animal products, legumes and seeds. Processed non- GMO soy lecithin as well as sunflower seed lecithin are good vegan sources of choline. Bee pollen is an excellent brain food supplying 15% natural lecithin; all essential amino acids, b vitamins and folic acid.
Marine Phytoplanton - stimulates optimal neurotransmitter production that supports the improvement of memory and brain power.
Blue Green Algae - high levels of a compound called phenylethylamine (PEA) are present in blue green algae. Commonly referred to as the "molecule of love", also found in raw chocolate to a much lesser degree. This molecule enhances mood, balances depression and provides mental clarity and alertness. DHA, omega fatty acids, phospholipid choline, B vitamins and maintains a unique profile of health promoting molecules that provide superior brain function.
Spirulina - full-spectrum protein source that is important in balancing brain chemistry, helping to ensure a proper ratio of amino acids such as tryptophan, which creates serotonin.
5) Anti-oxidants - all berries, especially camu camu berry, are known for their high anti-oxidant levels that boost brain functions.
Camu camu berry - heightens brain performance and shields against "brain fog", dementia and reduces and eliminates build up of plaque on brain nerves associated with Alzheimer's.
Ginkgo biloba is a powerful herbal antioxidant that works specifically on cognitive brain capacity.
Carnosine - is one of the most potent antioxidant supplements available. It is found in highest concentrations in the brain and muscle, both tissues that rely on it heavily.
6) B12 and B vitamins - are essential for optimal brain, nervous system and metabolism actions. The nerves are surrounded by an insulating fatty sheath, called myelin. B12 plays a vital role in the metabolism of fatty acids essential for the maintenance of the myelin sheath. Prolonged B12 deficiency can lead to nerve degeneration and irreversible neurological damage.
7) Chinese Herbs
Schizandra and Rhodiola are regarded to be the prime brain tonics of Chinese herbalism.
Goji berries - Help our bodies produce choline, an essential nutrient that combats free-radical damage linked to neurological degeneration. (Also found in lecithin, see above)
Deer Antler - contains pantocrin and is known to be one of the top Chinese brain tonics, increasing mental acuity, central nervous system stimulating qualities.
8) Mucuna - Mucuna pruriens is an Ayurvedic herb that contains l-dopa, which naturally increases dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter essential to healthy brain chemistry.
Walnut - The Top Brain Nut
Walnuts are the top nut for brain health, having significantly high concentrations of DHA (Omega-3's), which keeps the brain flexible and fluid. Just a quarter cup of walnuts provides nearly 100% of the recommended daily intake of DHA. Its kinda cute how walnuts even look like little brains!! Walnuts also contain lecithin, which as we mentioned above, produces the neurotransmitter choline, improving brain power and memory by fastening signal transmission.
Some studies have linked low consumption of Omega-3s to depression and decreased cognitive function. Using walnuts in moderation can be a great way to boost your spirits as well as your IQ.
Recipe of the Month:
Superfood Brain Smoothie
It is summer where I currently reside and wild blackberries are abundantly found growing in beautiful natural places, soaking up the sunlight and ripening to perfection. They are buzzing with life-force and anti-oxidant rich brain nourishment.
I have been making this delicious smoothie lately that blends up all our brain food favorites into one amazingly powerful smoothie. This one is ideal for a hot summer days to get those cognitive juices flowing.
I like to make this smoothie for several weeks in a row if I am able. Some of the superfood ingredients (chinese herbs and lions mane) are especially beneficial when taken over a period of time. The longer the better for the most effective results.
For those who want a bit more brain power, add the Ginkgo Powder Extract by Healthforce, its the best out there.
Until our next issue...
May you thrive, prosper and evolve in the best of ways!
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All information in this ezine is the personal view of the author and is for educational purposes only and not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or prescription. This information has not been evaluated by the FDA and is not intended to cure or prevent any disease.
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