Happy Monday Everyone! I hope you all had a beautiful weekend and are enjoying this month’s topics revolving around the brain and brain injury!
Last week we talked about PTSD, emotional dysfunction and brain injury, so if you missed it, it’s a good one! Head on over to my website to catch up!
To end out the month of March, I thought we’d finish up with some nutritional recommendations that can be helpful when dealing with brain injury and just overall boosting your brain’s ability to function.
This is of course, after having done the first things we talked about this month like Craniopathy care, emotional help, and assessing the jaw/bite. These must be done first, but there are great anti-inflammatory foods as well as nutritional recommendations that can be very helpful to help the brain and nervous system heal more effectively.
Let’s start with some brain facts and why the nutrition you put in your body is so important to help your brain function and do all the tasks that it needs to:
1. Your brain utilizes 25% of the food energy we consume. That means whatever we put into our body, 25% of that is going straight away to the brain for fuel.
Meaning if you need your brain to heal, or if you need it to work harder or more efficiently, you can’t feed it junk. It utilizes a lot of nutrients!
2. Your brain utilizes 25% of O2. This is a big point why the craniopathy care is VITAL as well as examining air passageways to make sure it gets enough oxygen to heal/function.
3. The brain is 1-2% of our body fat.
4. The brain is made of 60% fat. “Fat Head”. That means it NEEDS a lot of good fats to function. The more inflammation and damage, the more good fats we need. Hence why so many individuals are leaning towards more ketogenic diets. I’m not saying it’s for everyone, and I modify it for different people, but so many are fat deficient in our society, with too much emphasis on carbohydrates and proteins.
5. The brain is THE MOST affected by nutrition/and it’s environment. We already talked about the brain environment a few weeks ago, so we most certainly need to change that or else nutrition won’t make much difference long term. However, since it’s the most affected by these two, we need to make sure as best as we can we are feeding it what it needs!
So what does the brain need?
– Well it needs good sources of fats like fish, grass fed meats, coconut oil, grass fed better, oils, nuts, avocados, ect.
– It also needs some good carbs in the sense of fruit and veggies
– It doesn’t need as much protein, but that being said if you are eating good amounts of grass fed proteins and fruits and veggies, protein won’t be a problem. Most people focus too much on getting enough protein which is usually dysfunctional if their upper digestion is improper and not breaking it down. Not so much that you need more consumption.
The four best brain foods are as follows:
1. Salmon – high in good fats omega 3
2. Wild Blueberries – high in natural antioxidants.
3. Greens: Spinach/kale/swiss chard/ collards – high in folate, iron, calcium and vitamins E and K.
4. Nuts: Walnuts.- high in good fats, ALA/ Omega 3
These are all wonderful nutrients that help us to utilize that brain power that we need, while giving the vital nutrients needed to heal.
Ww also know about the Gut/Brain Connections, as I’m sure you’ve heard me talk in exhaustion by now.
The human DNA has over 20,000 genes, which the gut microbiome has 10 million genes. This means that problems in the gut can have a HUGE impact on how our brain and body functions.
For instance, you can have gut dysfunction and it not manifest as actual digestion problems. The gut/brain axis is so closely connected that it can really affect anything down that chain.
Symptoms such as tired, bloated, brain fog, cravings, or headaches….
All symptoms of dys-regulated gut/brain axis.
What I do like to mention though is yes, this gut/brain function is HUGE for adults but who is most affected by gut dysfunction is our children. Children are 10X more likely to feel effects than adults. That means you could give your child a junk meal, high in carbs or sugar, 25% goes straight to the brain for fuel and if given junk the child is going to associate a symptom 10X more and faster.
You will see this when a child eats a heavy sugar meal or carb heavy and has a temper tantrum that day or the next couple of days. Or maybe they have a food allergy you don’t know about, because they don’t have a stomach reaction. They are growing and developing, and their brain needs that good nutrition to help those brain pathways to develop. Quick changes in the mood or function of their body is most likely due to inflammation somewhere, and the head and gut are always my first go to’s.
It’s also important to differentiate for adults and children the difference between SNACKS and TREATS.
Many parents will give there kiddos a sugar filled bar, or fruit snacks, cookies, ect for a “snack”, when it in reality is a “treat.”
On the whole, we shouldn’t consume these foods daily for snacks. Once in a while it can be a “Treat”, like say at a birthday party or an event. But, snacks should always consist of actual food needed to help us function.
A study done By Oxford in 2005 showed that brain foods in general helped school children with reading, spelling and writing. When we “feed” the brain what it needs, it will perform how we need it to.
The more junk food we consume, the more what is called oxidative stress builds up in our bodies. What do I mean by junk?
– Processed foods! Anything in a box or bag. Breads, pastas, rice, GMO foods, fast foods, lots of sugar, corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, to name a few. Basically just not real food. Even some “organic” labeled food can be junk. Like organic crackers… Yes maybe the ingredients are better, but is a high carb load really what you need for your brain, probably not unless you are an elite athlete that burns so many carbs.
Oxidative stress can come from other things as well such as physical stress, metabolism, uv rays, alcohol, pollutants and toxins, pesticides and herbicides, lack of sleep, smoking, ozone, emotional stress, processed foods, radiation, car exhaust, EMFs ect….
We DON’T Want oxidative stress because that means our cells and in particular our cell’s membranes won’t work well. We need those membranes to be strong. If they aren’t memory will decline, and chronic inflammation will occur.
That’s why eating foods high in anti-oxidants and using other means like Kangan water, DoTerra Essential oils like clove, rosemary, juniper berry and others which are high in antioxidants are so helpful for taking that oxidative stress down.
Unfortunately our foods are just not rich enough in these brain nutrients so supplementation is often needed. This is because our quality again is so poor, soil quality ect. So supplementation to fill in these gaps is VITAL.
Giving things like Omegas, whole food vitamins/minerals, gingko, alpha lipoic acid, glutathione/milk thistle and others are vital for that brain function. These I offer in my practice. Other’s are needed with brain injury or brain infections that happen. I like to use actual brain gland to support these and stem cell organ supplementation to help rebuild the brain.
Other ways we can improve our brain is through neuro aerobics.
Doing things to constantly keep the brain active. This is great for ADD, brain fog, memory, brain injury and dementia.
– Things like exercise
– Brain exercises like those found on luminosity or other kinetic movements
-learning an instrument
– learning a new craft
-educating in general
-moving while working your brain like working out and counting by 2s and 3s or backwards.
Our brain will adapt if we don’t challenge it. That’s why those who are more active have actually smarter brains.
There’s so much research for exercise and brain function because it increase difference factors in the brain like NRF2 and others.
I hope this topic was helpful to you! Take care of your brain it’s the BEST ASSET you have really.
Till next week!
Oil of the WEEK.
The oil of the week this week is Yarrow Pom.
Pomegranate is known as an amazing anti-oxidant, but this nutraceutical combines cold pressed pomegranate oil with Yarrow EO! It’s the first of it’s kind.
Yarrow|Pom Oil Product Description
A unique blend of Yarrow essential oil and Pomegranate seed oil, the doTERRA Yarrow|Pom Active Botanical Nutritive Duo offers significant benefits for the skin, body, and emotions. This proprietary blend has been carefully crafted to provide benefits related to the aging process, feelings of vitality, and overall wellness. Once you experience the variety of benefits that Yarrow|Pom oil has to offer, and breathe in the distinctive fruity, spicy, and herbaceous aroma, you’ll see that this is a blend you definitely want to add to your essential oil collection.
Yarrow|Pom Oil Uses and Benefits
- One significant benefit of Yarrow|Pom is the potential the oil holds for calming the body and mind.* Properties within the oil make it useful for those days when you need to calm or uplift your heart and mind. Diffusing or inhaling the oil is an easy way to take advantage of the calming effects of this oil. The next time you would like to promote feelings of calm, put a drop of Yarrow|Pom in the palm of your hand, rub the hands together, place the hands over the nose, and inhale deeply. When you’ve had a moment to breathe in the unique aroma of Yarrow|Pom oil, rub the excess oil over your heart to provide calming feelings throughout the day.
- Due to the chemical makeup of the oil, Yarrow|Pom is useful for promoting cellular, immune, and nervous system health.* One of the chemical constituents in Yarrow|Pom oil known as Beta-Carophyllene (β-caryophyllene) has substantial benefits for the immune and cellular systems. To promote a healthy immune response, consider taking one to two drops of Yarrow|Pom daily by adding the oil to at least four fluid ounces, and swallowing.
- As mentioned, the uplifting properties of Yarrow|Pom oil can help to calm the body and mind.* If you enjoy using essential oils for mood management, try diffusing Yarrow|Pom oil during the winter or during dark, dreary days in order to uplift your mood. The calming combination of Yarrow oil and cold-pressed pomegranate seed oil will lift your spirits as the aroma fills your home on a monotonous day stuck indoors. As you can imagine, Yarrow|Pom is a great oil to diffuse during holiday parties and gatherings, because it promotes a soothing environment. Furthermore, if you know someone who is feeling down during the holidays, consider sending a bottle of Yarrow|Pom their way for a pick-me-up.
- Yarrow|Pom oil contains many internal benefits, including powerful antioxidant support, healthy metabolic function support, and benefits for the cells.* When taken internally, Yarrow|Pom oil can help to provide the body with useful antioxidants, promote a healthy metabolism, and restore youthful vitality. No matter your goals for internal health, Yarrow|Pom oil is definitely an essential oil that you will want to incorporate into your regular routine.
- When incorporated into your skincare regimen, Yarrow|Pom has the potential to promote a smooth, youthful complexion. Both Yarrow and pomegranate seed can help to moisturize and restore healthy-looking skin, while also working to reduce the appearance of skin imperfections. As a special, proprietary blend, this essential oil works to activate protecting proteins within the skin in order to protect the complexion from enzymes that breakdown collagen and elasticity. To take advantage of the revitalizing and skin-protecting benefits of Yarrow|Pom oil, try applying two drops to the face, chest, neck, and hands each morning and night.
- The properties of Yarrow|Pom oil make it useful for providing the body with targeted benefits. Because the oil is calming to the body and mind, it can be used as part of a relaxing massage after a long, tiring day. To experience the targeted benefits of Yarrow|Pom oil, use the oil to create a rejuvenating massage that will help to soothe tension in certain areas.
Chemistry of Yarrow|Pom Oil
Main chemical components: Punicic acid, β-caryophyllene, chamazulene
The exclusive, proprietary doTERRA Yarrow|Pom blend contains chemical components that support the body when taken internally* With chemical components like the omega 5 punicic acid, antioxidants, β-caryophyllene, and chamazulene, the Yarrow|Pom oil blend supports immune, nervous system, and cellular function and rejuvenation.* Not to mention, the blend is vegan-friendly.
Wishing you a happy and healthy week,