Possibly the most important section of the blog- in this Nutrition section you will find information on how to properly fuel the brain. There is no denying the correlation between proper diet and dementia and alzheimers prevention, proper prenatal care, and improving overall brain health.
There is certainly a lot of discussion these days about the ketogenic diet, especially as it relates to brain function. I thought it would be instructive to review one of the most important, and early, research studies in this area, as it reveals several very important findings that are worthy of attention.
The study, Effects of beta-hydroxybutyrate on cognition in memory-impaired adults, dates back to 2003. Why this is relevant with respect to the ketogenic diet is because beta-hydroxybutyrate is one of the ketones produced when somebody is in ketosis. The ketogenic diet is one that is aggressive in terms lowering dietary carbohydrate intake while increasing dietary fats. The production of ketones is amplified in people who supplement with things like coconut oil or MCT oil. Continue reading
Whoever thought you could bake grapefruit? Well you can, and this delicious breakfast proves it! Continue reading
What science has revealed over the past decade about the role our resident microbes play in keeping us healthy has truly been remarkable. It’s now clear that the more than 100 trillion microbes living on and within us are, moment to moment, playing a fundamental role in virtually every system within the human body. Who would have conceived that research would have revealed, for example, that the bacteria living within the colon are helping shape our mood, regulating our appetite, manufacturing health-sustaining vitamins, controlling our immune systems and inflammation, and even influencing the expression of our DNA?
This expanding science is compelling, humbling, and, at the same time, empowering, as we now are beginning to make real inroads into understanding how changes in the microbiome (the collection of the microbes, their genetic material, and the metabolic products they create) affect health, disease resistance and longevity. Continue reading
This is a terrific recipe for a great lemon chicken dish sent to us by Al Klapperich. Use free range chicken if available, and if you choose to add the dairy products, make sure to choose organic, again, if available. I am a big fan of cauliflower, not only because it is a brassica vegetable and therefore quite helpful in terms of detoxification, but because it is also a good source of prebiotic fiber that helps nurture your gut bacteria!
I, like many of you, have often wondered about the notion of drinking a cup of coffee after the evening meal. People often say things like, “I can’t drink coffee after 4PM or I won’t be able to sleep,” and this seems to make sense. Others, like myself, can enjoy a coffee after dinner seemingly without any consequences, as far as sleep is concerned.
To help shed some light on this issue, researchers publishing in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine recently reported the results of study in which individuals consumed 400mg of caffeine 0, 3, or 6 hours prior to their normal bedtime. These folks were compared to a similar group of people who received a placebo. Sleep was measured by self-reporting as well as through the use of a portable sleep monitor. Continue reading
As many of you know, I am a big proponent of salmon. Salmon may well be one of the most healthful foods available on the planet. Natural, wild-caught salmon is a rich source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12, vitamin D, selenium, and phosphorus. In addition, it’s a terrific source for protein as well as omega-3 fatty acids.
And when talking about the omega-3s, salmon has and an astounding 1.5 g of DHA in just a 3.5 ounce serving. DHA is a critically important omega-3 fatty acid, especially for brain health. Continue reading
How much alcohol should we consume? We have all heard that there are health benefits associated with low level alcohol consumption, like drinking a glass or two of red wine each day. Indeed, I have made this suggestion in my blogs and in many of the books I have written. While we do know that alcohol is, in and of itself, toxic to nerve cells, the scientific literature would tell us that there is decreased risk of conditions like Alzheimer’s disease in individuals who consume small amounts of alcohol each day.
In a new study appearing in the journal Scientific Reports, researchers again attempted to unravel the facts as it relates to the beneficial effects of alcohol. Before you get put off by this study’s somewhat compelling (Beneficial effects of low alcohol exposure, but adverse effects of high alcohol intake on glymphatic function) title, allow me to explain. Continue reading
I’ve received a number of questions lately on how to bring some new flavors to breakfast. While keeping in mind that a brain healthy diet is rich in a number of foods, I certainly have a few favorite breakfasts that are my regular go-tos on days that I decide to eat breakfast
One I’d like to share with you today is this delicious recipe for pumpkin breakfast pudding. It’s a great source of the nutrients you need to start the day, and tastes great without being full of sugar. So give this a shot tomorrow!
And in the comments, let me know what some of your favorite breakfasts are!
Over the past several years, we’ve seen the rates of type 2 diabetes in the United States absolutely skyrocket. At this stage, there’s no doubt about it: lifestyle choices are playing a key role in causing this problem.
As far as I’m concerned, this is a threat to our collective health not only because of the harmful role diabetes can play in the body, but because of the myriad ailments that tend to be correlated with diabetes and its impacts elsewhere in the body, from the kidneys to the brain. For instance, did you know that type 2 diabetics may have as much as a 4x increase in risk for becoming a patient with Alzheimer’s?
All of this in mind, let’s look at what lifestyle choices can do to improve the healthspan of type 2 diabetics.
There is clear scientific evidence that supports the idea that lifestyle interventions like caloric restriction, fasting, and a ketogenic support the health of positive gene pathways, enhance the production of endogenous stem cells, power up the brain, increase the production of antioxidants, and even reduce inflammation.
But there is no doubt that implementing these ideas, in terms of creating a workable diet, may well prove challenging.
Our guest today on The Empowering Neurologist is Valter Longo, PhD. Dr. Longo has created a new dietary approach that in many ways mimics the effectiveness of the more difficult approaches described above, but at the same time is much easier to implement. He calls this diet the Fasting-Mimicking Diet, or FMD, and it is described in great detail in his new, best-selling book, The Longevity Diet. Continue reading