The memory! How not to be amazed by the vast amount of information brain stores during one’s lifetime!
The brain! Although it represents only 2% of body weight, it uses 25% of the oxygen consumed, 20% of energy expenditure and a sixth on the heart alone.
To perform, the brain must be oxygenated and well fuelled.
- Not drinking enough water can hinder concentration.
- Skipping meals often leads to adverse side effects on the brain, concentration and memory.
- Eating a diet too high in fat and sugars can cause drowsiness and affect memory.
With age, the sugar levels in the blood tends to increase. Physical exercise helps regulate blood sugar levels, improving memory and mental capabilities.
With aging, there is a loss of cellular tissue. In the brain, these changes will affect the memory. More often than before, it can happen that you have a "word on the tip of the tongue" or forgetting the names of people recently met. If these little frustrating events do not affect your daily activities, everything is normal.
Alzheimer's disease begins before the age of 50, occasionally 50 to 60 years. Anatomical brain lesions help to assess the disease. Senile dementia manifests between the ages of 70 to 75 years. Most of the time, its origin is arterial (arteriosclerosis).
Diseases, medications and memory
Hypertension, high cholesterol, poorly managed diabetes, obesity, depression, hearing and visual problems, stroke, alcoholism, anemia, deficiencies in B vitamins, especially vitamin B12, smoking and lack of exercise are all factors that can contribute to memory loss and lack of concentration.
When taking several pharmaceutical drugs regularly, they can have a negative side effect on the memory, especially benzodiazepines (anxiolytics and hypnotics), neuroleptics, antidepressants and lithium.
Certain supplements to the rescue
- Omega-3 are essential. They are recommended in cases of attention deficit disorder, memory loss, lack of concentration, senile dementia and Alzheimer's. If you have trouble digesting omega-3’s, remember to take them with enzymes (lipase) or bitters such as (artichoke, milk thistle, dandelion). There is also the Omega-3’s from herring roe that are easier to digest because they are naturally associated with choline, and bile component.
- One study showed that combining omega-3 and phosphatidylserine, test subjects had achieved a significant improvement in short or long term memory, learning abilities and the time required to copy a complex diagram. The studies conclude that: Omega-3’s and phosphatidylserine taken together can improve performance in older people not suffering from dementia, but complain of memory problems.
- Vitamin D exerts a neuroprotective action and reduces inflammation. The risk of developing a loss of cognitive faculties is 25 times higher when the blood level of vitamin D is too low.
- Curcumin, are anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, compounds which favour the regeneration of neurons.
- The PQQ (pyrroloquinoline quinone), a promising antioxidant which protects neurons against oxidative damage and prevents the accumulation of amyloid plaque. It helps improvemental concentration and short-term memory.
- The B vitamins, especially vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin) whose deficiency is common in older people
- Gingko biloba, a plant with anti-oxidant properties are recognized to facilitate blood flow to the brain, reduce mental fatigue, increase attention and concentration. Its effects seem more present when used in prevention.
- If you are taking medication, consult a naturopath before starting therapy.
The Mediterranean diet also known for its benefits for its cardiovascular benefits, also helps, reduce the risk of senility and Alzheimer's. Increase daily intake of fish, olive oil, and fresh fruits and vegetables.
Exercise your memory, by reading, doing crossword puzzles, writing lists to help remember, memorizing aloud, playing an instrument and making sure you have enough hours of sleep. Sleep improves the ability to remember and to learn and easily access our memories.- Back to previous page -