What Are Antioxidants?
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The media talks about antioxidants all the time, but what are antioxidants, really? Watch this video to learn how they benefit your brain.
Transcript: According to the American Journal of Physiology, your brain represents just two-percent of your body...
According to the American Journal of Physiology, your brain represents just two-percent of your body weight, but demands 20-PERCENT of your resting metabolism! In other words, your mind's your body's biggest energy hog, and you have to feed it well if you want it to perform. The best foods for your thinker are known as antioxidants, which include: Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and beta-carotene, a form of Vitamin A. To see how antioxidants work, understand that, like the rest of the body, the brain ages over time. Free radicals, unstable atoms or molecules that occur in the body, are partly to blame. When free radicals meet with oxygen, the result is rust-like oxidative damage to the brain. The good news is that antioxidants REDUCE that damage, keep the brain agile and help slow the aging process. Blueberries, one of the most powerful antioxidants, also reduces the effects of diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Prunes, raisins, blackberries, and pomegranates are ripe with good-for-you antioxidants, too. Meanwhile, spinach, Swiss chard, and arugula are vegetables with excellent antioxidant power. Plus, these leafy greens help the body produce happiness hormones, like serotonin and dopamine. When consuming both fruits and veggies, remember: the darker the color, the higher the antioxidant content! Two other brain-boosting sources of antioxidants are probably already a regular part of your diet. I'm talking about coffee and dark chocolate. Aside from slowing down free radical damage, these substances contain caffeine, which enhances short-term memory. Plus, dark chocolate stimulates endorphins, which help improve mood! Just consume in moderation: one ounce of dark chocolate each day is plenty, and you should stop at two to three cups of java or tea. To further boost your brainpower, consume a healthy portion of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are a primary building block of healthy brain tissue. Find them in coldwater fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines, and aim for two to three four-ounce servings every week. A good brain diet is basically a healthy body diet. It's easy, natural and tasty, so go ahead and nourish your noggin!More »
Last Modified: 2013-10-01 | Tags »
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Organic amnesia is the most common type of amnesia among patients. But what is it exactly? Watch this video to learn more about what it means to have organic amnesia.
Transcript: From newer films, like the romantic comedy, 50 First Dates, to classics like Goldie Hawn's Overboard,...
From newer films, like the romantic comedy, 50 First Dates, to classics like Goldie Hawn's Overboard, amnesia has a starring role in Hollywood. But what is amnesia about off-screen? Amnesia is a catch-all term for the loss or disruption of a person's memory. The most common type of amnesia, organic amnesia, occurs when the brain is damaged or injured. Organic amnesia can be the result of a head injury, like that sustained in a car accident. But usually, the memory difficulties following a head injury are temporary, and do not result in long-term amnesia. Instead, lasting organic amnesia is more often the result of medical brain damage. Common causes of organic amnesia include: lack of adequate oxygen to the brain, brain inflammation following an infection, and tumors in the areas of the brain that control memory. There are two types of organic amnesia: retrograde and anterograde. Retrograde amnesia is the impaired ability to remember past events and information. This is what Goldie Hawn experiences in Overboard, when her character falls off a yacht and forgets who she is. anterograde amnesia, meanwhile, is the inability to learn and remember new information after the onset of amnesia. This is what's depicted in 50 First Dates, where Drew Barrymore's character can't remember anything after a car accident. Although less popular in media, anterograde amnesia is much more prominent in real life than retrograde amnesia. It makes sense that amnesia can cause a great deal of hardship, and may lead a person to become depressed or anxious. Because of this, people with any amnesia-like symptoms should make an immediate appointment with a physician, who will need to rule out other conditions that cause memory-loss, like Alzheimer's disease. Once organic amnesia is diagnosed, treatment focuses on techniques and strategies to make up for the memory loss. This may include occupational therapy to help replace missing skills, as well as memory training, which involves learning to organize information so that it's easier to remember. While there is no medication approved to treat organic amnesia, some people benefit from anti-depressants or anti-anxiety drugs if depression or anxieties are present along with memory loss. Remember: seek medical assistance immediately if you or a loved one experiences abnormal memory loss!More »
Last Modified: 2013-11-22 | Tags »
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The brain is a powerful organ but it needs exercise too! Exercising your brain can improve your overall brain health and ability to remember things. Watch this video for memory-boosting tips.
Transcript: Several areas of the brain are associated with memory. The hippocampus, a librarian of sorts, integrates...
Several areas of the brain are associated with memory. The hippocampus, a librarian of sorts, integrates new information into short-term memory and maintains long-term memories within the cerebral cortex. The amygdala processes memories of emotion. Experts say it takes approximately eight seconds of focused concentration to route information through the hippocampus into the correct memory center. Exercising your brain helps stimulate new pathways among brain cells. Word games and puzzles are good, but challenging yourself with new activities is even better. Learn to play chess, the piano-or read a book about something you know nothing about. The more you challenge your brain to do things new and differently, the better. Take a different route home from work. If you're right-handed, brush your teeth or write with your left hand and vice versa. Physical activity is just as important. It increases blood flow throughout your body-and your brain. 30 minutes of aerobic activity a day, or an equivalent amount of brisk walking, gardening or doing housework, is key. Being active socially is a great way to combine physical and mental challenges, such as golfing, dancing or meeting for a Tai Chi class. Another memory-boosting tip is called "chunking," which involves partitioning large amounts of information into easily digestible bites. For instance, you can remember phone numbers in groups of 3, 3, and 4, or think of your grocery list according to sections of the store. Certain foods may boost your brainpower, too. A recent study looked at wild blueberry juice and found it improved the learning and memory of older adults and feeding your brain with antioxidant-rich vegetables, dark-skinned fruits, cold-water fish and nuts also helped. For more information about memory and mental health, please see other videos on this siteMore »
Last Modified: 2014-01-21 | Tags »
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