The health of our brains and bodies are in our hands, and we can all make lifestyle choices that support overall body and brain health. The cells in our bodies regenerate throughout our lifetime. We can heal, fight off disease, and improve the function of our brain at any age by choosing to make simple healthy changes in our lives. Choose among the following topics to see more specific information and ideas about ways to support your body and brain health.
Brain Health and Wellness
Key concepts to grasp in supporting our body’s defense systems and maximizing brain and body health are as follows:
Inflammation: This refers to the body’s response to foreign insults such as injury, illness or substance exposure. When the body is attacked, the immune system triggers a cascade of changes that happen in the body to defend itself and heal. This is a wonderful defense system when self-limited and recovery occurs. However, when the body is under attack constantly (over stress, poor food, lack of sleep, toxic exposures) then the system is unable to recover to fight and this allows for damage to occur to cells, tissues, organs leading to disease processes to take hold. Health and brain health depends on balance of good/bad inflammatory changes in our bodies.
Microbiome: A community of microorganisms (such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses) that inhabit a particular environment and especially the collection of microorganisms living in or on the human body. Your body is home to about 100 trillion bacteria and other microbes, collectively known as your microbiome . (Miriam Webster) The Gut microbiome maintains our body’s metabolism, houses the bulk of our immune system and modulates inflammatory responses in the body.
Neurogenesis: The making of new brain cells/Neurons. Research shows we can grow new brain cells throughout our lifetime. Exercise and diet have been shown to stimulate new cell growth.
Neuroplasticity: Our brains communicate information through a complex network of neuronal connections. There are over 100 billion neurons communicating through trillions of connections that are ever evolving in our lives. We can rewire our brains!