The brain is like your super computer command center. It controls all of the body’s functions. While the brain is like a computer that boots up and runs automatically, diet, exercise, hydration, gut health, hormones, stress and emotions can impact its ability to operate at its highest functioning level.
Exercise, when done consistently and in a balanced way is beneficial in maintaining (and in some cases improving) brain health. Exercise increases heart rate which in turn delivers more oxygen to the brain. The brain thrives when properly oxygenated. According to neuropsychologist Dr. Aaron Bonner-Jackson, PhD, ‘We know that physical exercise, and aerobic exercise in particular, is very beneficial for maintaining brain health, even in people who are at risk for developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease’. As with other organs, over exercise can negatively impact the brain as well, especially when improper breathing decreases oxygen levels delivered to the brain, chronic stress caused by consistent over exercising and also from dehydration.
5 Tips For Increasing Brain Health
1. Practice Good Sleep Hygiene
2. Eat A Balanced Diet, Especially Enough Healthy Fats
3. Hydrate Properly
4. Increase Gut Health
5. Reduce Stress
More and more scientists and doctors are understanding the powerful connection between the brain and the gut. We have all heard the phrase ‘Trust your gut’. But is following that actually a health practice that is also backed by science? Yes, it sure is!! You may think that your brain has the most nerve endings and receptors, but it doesn’t… your gut does! This means that your gut is responsible for receiving more signals then your brain and is deeply interconnected to the healthy functioning of the entire body, including the brain.
The health and proper balance of your gut contributes to both health and illness in significant ways. No matter what health issues someone is facing, adding intentionality and effective actions towards increasing gut health will make a positive impact. Your gut health effects every organ and system in your body, especially the following:
• Your immune system
• The balance of neurotransmitters in your brain
• Your digestion & absorption of nutrients
• Your Ph levels
• Your microbiome (more on this below)
• Brain function
• Internal inflammation (inflammation is associated and present with all illness & disease)
• Mental and emotional health
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