September 22, 2010

"Mind The Gap!"

Having just visited the most recent exhibit of Body Worlds at the Science Centre we thought it might be timely to share a little bit about the brain!

Brain Factors For Health


Water is the first part of a healthy brain, and of healthy brain foods. You need to be able to have the right allowance of water in your blood in order to have a healthy brain. Your brain must be fully hydrated so that it can provide you with the right thinking skills. Be sure that you are drinking plenty of water. Some signs of dehydration are headache pain, fatigue, and not being able to focus. So, keep yourself, and your brain, in plenty of water!

Brain Foods

Brain foods are also important to understand because they can help you be more alert, smarter, and even more creative. The best things that you can do for your brain include eating the right foods. If you are able to eat well for your brain, your brain will be able to take care of you for as long as you are alive. Keep careful track of the food that you eat, and try not to skimp miss meals!


The neurotransmitters in your brain are what are responsible for all of the functions that you hold so dear. There are neurotransmitters that are in charge of the way that you move, the way that you think, and the way that you feel. Each of them needs to be treated well – and fed well – so that they can provide you with the best work possible. There are three key neurotransmitters, and eating the right foods will help each of them succeed.


Acetylcholine is the first one. It is responsible for the voluntary movements that your body makes. It is also responsible for drinking, memory, and behavioral inhibitions. People who have Alzheimer's and memory loss might actually have less Acetylcholine, or the transmitters might be blocked. In order to keep your brain healthy and to keep your mind and memory sharp, you need to be sure that you are providing your brain with high Acetylcholine levels. To do this, eat lots of egg yolks, peanuts, wheat germ, meat, fish, milk, vegetables and cheese. They contain plenty of Acetylcholine.


The next important neurotransmitter is dopamine. It is in charge of your voluntary movement and emotional arousal. Schizophrenia might be associated with having too much dopamine, and having too little might be something that causes Parkinson's disease. The drug L-Dopa is given to increase the levels of dopamine in the brain. Therefore, it is important that you do all you can to keep the levels of dopamine correct in your brain. In order to have high levels of dopamine, eat meat and milk products, as well as fish and beans, nuts and soy products. In fact, eating 3 or 4 ounces of protein will actually help you to be more energized, and will make you more alert and even more assertive.


Serotonin is involved with arousal, sleep, mood, appetite, and sensitivity. It is also something that is excitatory, and is part of how the brain produces feelings of pleasure. Depression might be caused by having too little serotonin that is active in the brain. In order to keep your levels right and to keep them active, eat lots of pasta, starchy vegetables, potatoes and cereals, as well as breads.

Eat For Life

Aside from taking care of the neurotransmitters in your brain, there are also other things that food can do for you. There are some important tips that you can follow in order to be overall more smart and to eat for intelligence. First of all, balance your glucose levels. This means that the levels of sugars in your body must be level so that your brain can work well. Secondly, eat the fats that are essential to your diet. Third, include plenty of protein, and fourth, include plenty of vitamins. Along with this, there are some important areas to be sure that you include.


Protein is important in balancing your brain health. It provides the building blocks for your body, and for your mind. Protein is also used in order to make the neurotransmitters in the first place. It is found in meat, fish, milk and cheese. It actually provides the building blocks for the way that your body will grow and change, so it is important to all of your body systems. It helps the body's tissues, internal organs, nerves, and brain and heart thrive. Eating protein will help you have improved mental performance.


Carbohydrates are also important to a healthy brain. They enhance the absorption of tryptophan. This is converted to serotonin, and is used in the brain. If you eat a carbohydrate meal, you will feel calm and relaxed for several hours. The key carbohydrates that you can eat are grains, fruits, and vegetables. Also, digestion causes the breakdown of carbohydrates in to the glucoses or sugars that your body needs. This is also the primary source of energy for your brain in general. If you don't keep your glucose levels even, which means your carbohydrates are out of whack, you might feel confused, dizzy, and you might also have convulsions or lack of consciousness.


Fats are also an important part of your brain health. This is because the brain itself is more than 60% fat. The reason that the brain contains so much fat is that the brain cells themselves are covered by something called the myelin sheath, which is actually made up of 75% fat. Fat is an important messenger in your brain, and is responsible for regulating your immune system, the way that your blood circulates, and memory and move. Omega 3 fatty acids are essential to the way that your brain performs. You can find Omega 3 fatty acids in oily fish like salmon, sardines, and tuna. You can also find it in Flax seed and in vitamin supplements. If you don't have enough omega-3 fatty acids in your diet, you might feel depressed, have poor memory or even learning disabilities, and you might have a low IQ, or conditions such as dyslexia, ADD, or other mental disorders.

Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals are also important for a healthy brain. They are essential for the way that your brain grows and develops. If you truly want to have a healthy brain, you need to be able to get plenty of B vitamins. These are the vitamins that are responsible for making your brain healthy and producing energy for your entire body. A, C, and E vitamins are antioxidants, and are very important for preserving memory in the elderly, as well as in people at any age.

Important minerals that you need to promote good brain healthy include magnesium and manganese. These are important for brain energy. Also, Sodium, potassium and calcium are important as well in order to strengthen the thinking process. All of these minerals also make sure that the transmission processes that your brain does on a daily basis go off without a hitch and continue to work just as well as they can.

When your brain is healthy, so are you! Remember that the correct balance of foods is important. There isn't one main food that is a brain food, or that will promote the best brain healthy. A combination of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, and vitamins and minerals is essential for good brain health. It is also important to eat the correct foods so that your neurotransmitters can function as well as possible. We really are what we eat and what we take in from the world around us!

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