Biohack Your Brain – Kristen Willeumier
The brain is not a machine or an organ, but an entire universe in itself.
The Problem of Dementia
According to the World Health Organization, one out of every ten people over the age of 65 suffers from dementia. This translates to approximately 50 million people worldwide.
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The problem is also worsening. That figure is expected to triple by 2050 as the world’s population ages.
Solution: A Healthy Diet
Consume plenty of vegetables and legumes, whole grains over processed carbohydrates, and moderate amounts of dairy, meat, and sugar. When you combine nuts, seeds, and olive oil, you have a diet that will benefit your overall health.
Fat is good for you
Given that the brain is 60% fat, it’s no surprise that dietary fat influences cognitive function. In the brain, myelin sheaths, a layer of insulation around nerve fibres that allows neurons to send signals quickly and effectively, are mostly made of fat. It is recommended to consume two servings of “oily fish” and seafood per week, such as salmon, tuna, trout, mussels, oysters, herring, mackerel, or sardines.
The Power of Water
Given that the brain is composed of 60% fat, it is not surprising that dietary fat influences cognitive function. Myelin sheaths in the brain are mostly made of fat. They are a layer of insulation around nerve fibres that allows neurons to send signals quickly and effectively. Two servings of “oily fish” and seafood per week, such as salmon, tuna, trout, mussels, oysters, herring, mackerel, or sardines, are recommended.
Give your gray matter a good workout, and it will grow in strength. Lifting weights increases biceps size, swimming improves abdominal strength, and jogging increases quadriceps size. Training on a regular basis rewires the brain, forming new connections between different areas of the neural network.
Create New Brain Cells
When you write stories, poems, songs, love letters, or journal entries, your hippocampus creates new neurons. This is because creative activities force your brain to generate new words and concepts. Tension, like weightlifting, indicates that your brain is working hard.
Stress is bad for the brain
When you are stressed, your brain produces biochemicals that serve as both physical and metaphorical survival tools. For example, adrenaline allows you to outrun predators and defend yourself against attackers. It’s also what drives you to stay up late to meet tight deadlines.
On the other hand, stress can be harmful to your health. It depletes your brain’s cognitive abilities, depriving you of the tools necessary to overcome obstacles.
Breathing Exercises Assist You in Overcoming Stress
Deep breathing reduces cortisol levels as well as heart rate and blood pressure, allowing you to go from crisis to calm in seconds. The best part is how simple it is to learn.
A Guide To Breathing Exercises
- To begin, close your eyes and place one hand on your stomach and the other over your heart.
- Take a deep breath in through your nose and count to six as you draw the air down toward your stomach.
- Hold your breath for three counts before exhaling slowly while counting to six.
- After five to ten repetitions of this exercise, open your eyes and appreciate your new and calmer perspective on the world.
We have approximately 60,000 thoughts per day, the vast majority of which are negative.
However, when they were asked to keep a journal of their thoughts, it was discovered that 60 to 70% of them were negative. According to additional research, that figure could be as high as 90%.
Positive thoughts create positive neural pathways, while negative thoughts create negative neural pathways.
Record your thoughts
Keep a notebook and jot down as many thoughts as you can, especially those that cause you to reconsider your position. Look for patterns in your journal after a week. You may have instilled a sense of helplessness or negativity in them.
After you’ve identified it, list all of the reasons why a typical negative thought could be correct. Make a list of all the reasons you believe it is incorrect.
Get rid of negative thoughts
When approached rationally, negative thoughts lose their sting. It is not always reality that depresses you; more often than not, it is an emotional overreaction.
Remember that the next time one of those nagging thoughts enters your mind, you’ll feel a lot better!