How to keep your brain healthy. It's a subject that desperately needs attention and is the mission of the drperlmutter.com blog. Categories are listed to the right and lead to empowering information on topics such as maintaining brain health and improving memory through a gluten free diet. We update this information as soon as it becomes available so check back often!
Food & Health
One of my core messages has always been that the dietary choices you make on a daily basis have a profound impact on your overall health and well-being.
Our best peer reviewed research continues to indicate that, by far, the best diet for human health is one that favors whole foods that maintain blood sugar, keep the gut lining intact, are devoid of pesticides and provide optimal nutrients for the body.
One food item in particular meets all of these criteria and adding it to your diet – or, I should say, adding it back – can benefit your health in a number of ways.
Adding Bone Broth Back In
As I’ve previously discussed, a number of factors, including poor diet, stress and environmental triggers, can lead to leakiness of the gut which increases the overall level of inflammation in the body. This in turn has far reaching negative effects on your health that include some of our most feared brain disorders
One effective way to improve and heal the gut is to provide your body with nutrients that ensure the integrity of the intestinal wall. One of the simplest and easiest foods in which you can find such nutrients is bone broth.
Bone broth has become increasingly popular in the last few years. While it might strike some of you as strange, bone broth is quite normal in some cultures, but here in the West our taste preferences are such that we really only consume the muscle meat. These other parts of the animal are much higher in certain nutrients that many of us lack in our diets because of our preference for muscle meat.
Most notably, bone broth is loaded with collagen – a protein that comes from bones, ligaments and tendons – and it is also high in many important amino acids. Collagen serves a host of important functions but in this case is incredibly effective at supporting the stomach lining by aiding in the formation of connective tissue, as we’ve known for a while. These amino acids – glycine and glutamine – maintain the integrity of your intestinal wall, and aren’t otherwise easily found even in the healthiest of Western diets. Check out this study on glycine and this study on glutamine for some of the science on these amino acids.
There’s More – Skin, Joint Health & Detoxification
Collagen can restore luster and tightness to your skin, and as I’ve discussed, what’s good for your gut is also good for your skin. As mentioned earlier, this is because of collagen’s role in forming connective tissue.
There are also specific proteins in bone broth that are excellent for supporting joint health. Bone broth contains Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) like Glucosamine, which are commonly taken as supplements to reduce joint pain and inflammation.
And lastly, the liver makes good use the glycine found in bone broth in orchestrating the removal of toxins from the body.
Where I Go for Bone Broth
Bone broth is a nutrition powerhouse, but the biggest drawback to making it on your own is the time it takes to prepare. Preparing it properly requires 24-48 hours of simmering which can be quite a commitment. There are plenty of great recipes out there for those of you that want to go this route.
For those of you that don’t have the time to make your own bone broth, one company that I’m a fan of is Kettle & Fire. Their product is delicious, and it’s the only shelf stable, non-frozen bone broth without any preservatives or additives. Not to mention it is 100% organic and grass-fed. Their new chicken bone broth is made only from organic chickens, organic vegetables and spices.
As the lifespan of the average person grows ever longer, we grapple with an important problem: how do we extend our healthspan, the period during which we can maintain an active and full lifestyle, to mirror our lifespan? An interesting study in the Journal of the American Geriatric Society looked at the role lifestyle choices can play in doing just that.
As I have emphasized over the past decade, the fundamental mechanism that underlies neurodegenerative conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and other issues (think diabetes, coronary artery disease, and even cancer), is the process of inflammation. We’ve got to do everything we can in terms of our lifestyle choices to bring inflammation under control. Dietary choices like choosing to limit sugar and carbohydrates, avoiding gluten, eliminating vegetable oils (corn oil, sunflower oil), increasing intake of healthful fats (olive oil, avocado oil, nuts and seeds), and favoring fiber-rich foods, are all fundamental building blocks of a lifestyle that helps to reduce the risk for excess inflammation.
We know that there is a higher level of the chemicals that mediate inflammation in the blood of individuals with higher blood sugar, caused by many of the poor choices outlined above. Again, higher blood sugar correlates with higher levels of inflammation. Continue reading
I wanted to share with you one of my favorite quotes…
A human being is part of the whole, called by us ‘Universe’; a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness.
This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and affection for a few persons nearest us.
Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
Nobody is able to achieve this completely but striving for such achievement is, in itself, a part of the liberation and a foundation for inner security
Your thoughts? Do you connect to this as much as I do?