67 minutes | Jul 1, 2020
MHME 022: How You Can Better Listen To Your Heart to Improve Your Emotional Wellbeing with Guy Lawrence
Humans are built to be resistant to negativity. That’s our brain’s coping mechanism. It’s psychology. It’s science. Whatever you’re feeling right now can directly affect your overall health and wellbeing. Sometimes, the situation that we find ourselves in can be difficult to accept. Other times, we just let these negative thoughts and emotions take over our lives. It’s just a matter of how we deal with these thoughts and how we surrender to them. If you find yourself fighting against negative thoughts, trying to bust yourself out of your negative situation, resisting change, and resisting fate, then this podcast is just perfect for you as it will help you embrace, accept, and play around with your situation to better your emotional wellbeing. In today’s episode on Emotional Wellbeing, we talk about: Listen To Your Heart To Find Your Purpose Acceptance Can Help You Learn and Grow Resistance is Hardwired Into Our Heart And Brain Internal Awareness Paves The Way To Acceptance Heart Rate Variability Helps Improve Emotional Wellbeing Having A Sense Of Commitment Practices Mindfulness Finding The Harmony Within You Makes You Live In The Flow Don’t Expect Instant Gratification Focus and Inner Awareness Helps Shift Pain and Anxiety Leading To A Better Emotional Wellbeing Playfulness Gives You The Freedom To Let Go Of Negativity Collaborative Meditation Enhances The Experience Have you ever felt like you are in some kind of emotional turmoil and just can't seem to get out of your negative situation? Feeling those negative emotions is normal. Being frustrated, angry, or agitated is normal. You can dwell on those emotions and beat yourself up everyday. Or, you can just leave those emotions behind and start accepting your situation, focusing on the positive, and accepting that growth takes time. For you to move on, the first step is always acceptance. Acceptance is a key factor in improving your emotional wellbeing. Resistance is natural. It's your brain's coping mechanism. Once it starts thinking that you are going deeper and deeper into a situation that can bring harm to you, it automatically switches on the alarm bell, telling you to turn back and run away. But running away can only cause your negative emotions to grow bigger and bigger. What once was a grain of sand or a raisin snowballed and ultimately turned into an avalanche. However, by working your way around resistance, you'll know that accepting and playing around it can help you cope better with it. Minimal stresses and activities can get you back on track and improve awareness. You might think practicing mindfulness and awareness takes a lot of effort. However, anything that is done repetitively and consistently can have great effects on yourself. Simple exercises such as walking a flight of stairs while counting the steps… Or closing your eyes and focusing on one thing that's around you can already help you practice mindfulness and awareness. Then, you can start looking inside you, meditate, and start listening to your heart, picking up your problems one by one, and solving them. Mindfulness and collaborative meditation enhance the experience and overall effect. There is something in social connections that urges you to do things. You can meditate on your own. But once you start doing it with other people, the experience gets amplified and the learning process is quicker. Science indicates that meditation can improve your quality of life. Imagine if you do it with more people. Sometimes, you just have to realize that there are things that you can and cannot control. And it is up to you how you want to handle it. Stop acting against those negative emotions and start looking inside you. Meditate and pay attention to what your heart is telling you. Only then can you move on and start living a better life. About Our Guest Guy Lawrence is a wellness coach and a fitness trainer. He hosts his own podcast “The Guy Lawrence Podcast,” and founded the “Let It In” program, a program that gives people insight on what they can do to achieve awareness, and lean into this life with purpose and vision. You can connect with Guy on his website. Emotional Wellbeing Listen To Your Heart To Find Your Purpose Growing up, Guy had a rebellious side to him and played rugby. But he felt this nagging pull for something more. That nagging feeling inside of you gives you a clue about what and where you want to be. Guy spent years travelling, jumping from job to job, relationship to relationship. He realised later on that he was running on a lot of unconscious behaviours and patterns he assumed to be true about him. Guy started looking at himself more internally and stepped into a world where he felt he had more meaning, more purpose, and more context. Listening to your heart and understanding what it is telling you can lead you to parts of you that need help and healing. He became a fitness trainer and started his own natural protein supplement company, 180 Nutrition, which became successful. Later on, he sold out of his company and started a new project. Acceptance Can Help You Learn and Grow The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a disruption in the lives of others that led them to question their preconceived notions. Acceptance is key. Sometimes you just have to walk away. Stop looking for external factors that are affecting your life and start looking internally Stop trying to dwell in your negative emotions and start realizing that you have full control over how you react to negative situations Guy started embodying the person he wanted to become. He started looking at his situation from a different set of eyes. He looked at his life experiences and saw the wisdom and lessons he learned and not the stories and things he was attached to. Look deep within yourself, find what really wants to come through, then act upon it, nurture it instead of trying to suppress it. Resistance Is Hardwired Into Our Heart And Brain We are hardwired to stay safe so our bodies can maintain the balance. Our brain has a defense mechanism wherein once we encounter uncomfortable or painful situations, it automatically hits the brakes and stops you from trying to accept the situation. Resistance is natural, especially when you step out of your comfort zone. But there is an awareness, a curiosity that something is not quite right underneath. In your heart you may know the answer, but you refuse to listen to the message. When you don’t address your problems from the moment it appears, it only gets bigger and bigger until it becomes too much to handle. Guy had the opportunity to learn not to shy away from what he was dealing with and accepted the resistance. From then, everything started to flow again. Internal Awareness Paves The Way To Acceptance Focusing internally helps you realize that there are negative emotions inside of you that you have been all too familiar with and have been unconsciously disrupting your inner peace Awareness helps you remove resistance and put you back to the path of acceptance. Heart Rate Variability Helps Improve Emotional Wellbeing The heart directly affects the brain which then, signals resistance. The heart rate variability assists us in improving our emotional wellbeing. Stop and find the present moment. Bring awareness to who you are at this moment to reconnect with yourself. Having A Sense Of Commitment Practices Mindfulness Simple thought practices can help cut disruptions and bring you back to the moment. It’s similar to going to the gym. The repetitions of the work you put in bring the rewards later. Bringing mindfulness and establishing consistency of habit allow you to reconnect with yourself Finding The Harmony Within You Makes You Live In The Flow Everything around us has its own rhythm and harmony. All we need to do is to listen to our heart to find ours. Once we find our harmony, we are able to live in flow, bringing mindfulness and acceptance into our lives. Everything is connected, but for most of us, we’ve lost that synchronicity. Don’t Expect Instant Gratification Finding harmony and acceptance is not instantaneous. It’s a practice that builds up slowly but surely and not something that happens overnight. Anything that’s worth doing and having in life is done with love and labor. Dealing With Pain People with pain and anxiety feel the weight of the world. It gets heavier and heavier, and we feed into that. Find a way to break the pattern of anxiety and suffering by practicing mindfulness and meditation. Give your brain something else to focus on. The practice of proprioception or awareness of the body or brain helps you bypass pain and anxiety. By doing that for a couple of weeks, the pain management and anxiety levels will shift considerably. Playfulness Gives You The Freedom To Let Go Of Negativity Playing with your positive emotions and positive thoughts gives you a sense of openness. When you play, you give yourself this freedom and a suppression of the filter of your disbelief. Look for the joy around you and nurture the positivity in your heart. Collaborative Meditation Enhances The Experience Guy ran a free mini live retreat online in April. Meditating with more people helps you gain experience, allowing you to learn quicker, even through virtual meditation. Social connections help you commit to meditation. Simple meditative exercises help improve your quality of life. Previously Recommended Resources: Articles Cheng et al, (2019) Psychobiotics in mental health, neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental disorders https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1021949819300158 Prof T. G. Dinan & Prof. J. F. Cryan : Melancholic microbes: a link between gut microbiota and depression? https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/nmo.12198 Dr. James Doty: The Alphabet of the Heart https://jamesrdotymd.com/alphabet Books Psychobiotics Revolution by Scott C Anderson: http://psychobiotic-revolution.com. Memory Wise - Dr. Anne Unkenstein plus blurb The Biggest Takeaway about Emotional Wellbeing How you respond to situations plays a big role in
76 minutes | Jun 18, 2020
MHME 021: Improve Your Healthspan: How Your Genes Affect Your Health with Dr. Denise Furness
Finding out your genes increase your risk for a disease can be quite scary. It almost sounds like your fate, your health is dictated by your genetic makeup. But your genes don’t have to be a life sentence. You don’t have to accept that fate...well, not yet. What if I told you that you can still change the course of your health? That you can fight against and lower your risk for... Neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer’s Disease or Dementia. Or that a gene could be the reason you’re finding it hard to lose weight. Are your genes truly your destiny? Well, I believe that you can still rewrite your ‘health’ destiny and weave something more beautiful. Something that doesn’t restrict or limit the quality of your life. Something that lets you scream out at the top of your lungs... Yes, I can fight this! My genes are not in control, I am! Because that is what we all need to become. We all have to become empowered health warriors. Armed with the knowledge about our risk factors and motivated to make the necessary changes. Lifestyle changes are powerful because our health isn’t completely based on our genes. A personalised lifestyle plan and genes both affect your lifespan. A proper diet and nutrition. Exercise, movement, and physical activity. Getting enough sleep. All of these including a whole host of other factors have an impact. Genes are still important. They play an important role in our lives, but we don’t understand them fully. Despite what we already know, there are still common misconceptions about genes. For those of you who have done genetic testing, what were your results like? Does seeing those red, green, and yellow results give you a better understanding? Or maybe, it only increased your frustration and confusion. It might be that you became more anxious about your health. Far from being the empowered individual, you end up being more stressed. Stressed about what your future would be. Some people are even more susceptible to getting more stressed than they already are. Oh, what to do now? Build the right team that supports and guides you. Look for a functional medicine practitioner. Or someone that has training and knowledge in this space. There have been more and more practitioners like myself who’ve been interested and working towards improving their knowledge. So they can help people like you. Now’s not the time to take a backseat. We’re talking about your health here. And you are the driver. Not your genes, but YOU. So strap on your seatbelt and shift the gears. Don’t worry though because I’m here to guide you. Check out this new episode as we go over: The common misunderstandings surrounding genes and epigenetics How nutrition and environment have an impact on your genes Dr. Denise’ own risk and the applications for people in a similar situation What to be mindful of when getting a genetic test The common gene variations associated with neurodegenerative conditions Episode Highlights Finding The Genes Affecting Health Common Misconceptions On Genetics And Your Health How Genetic Variations Impact Your Health Understanding Your Genetic Risk Factors Genes Impact On Stress Levels Genes Role With Weight Gain Other Factors To Consider About Your Genes The Biggest Takeaway About How Genes Affect Your Health About Our Guest Dr. Denise Furness is a molecular geneticist and nutritionist. She spent 20 years studying the relationship between our genes and our environment, and has focused on nutrient genomics or the relationship between what we eat and how to fix our genes. You can connect with Dr. Denise through her website, Your Genes and Nutrition or reach out to her on her Facebook. Genes, Lifestyle Choices, And Your Health Finding The Genes Affecting Health The difference between a clinical geneticist and a molecular geneticist is that a clinical geneticist works in diagnosing rare genetic disorders linked with disease. Dr. Denise is an academic and scientist which involves having an understanding of viruses. Her work eventually led into animal work, but she shifted to nutrigenomics and got her PhD and postdoctoral fellowship on that. She worked on research for almost 10 years before moving into private practice. She now works in helping children with autism, people with chronic fatigue, and those facing cognitive decline by identifying the underlying issues affecting their health. Common Misconceptions On Genetics And Your Health Your genetic makeup plays a large role in your predisposition to health and disease. Our genes are the instructions to make the proteins, but they need to be turned on. Nutrients and amino acids are needed to be able to make proteins. Exposures to chemicals and toxins also heavily influenced gene expression. You need to be in balance by having a better relationship with your genetic makeup and making sure it’s nourished with the right amount of food, activity, and sleep. How Genetic Variations Impact Your Health MTHFR is not a diagnosis for any disease. Genetic variations could have a small or large impact on how well a gene functions. In the case of MTHFR, it makes an enzyme that functions a little slower. By adding a bit more folate and B2, you won’t have a huge demand on methylation. The slight variations can be modified through diet and lifestyle. This is where personalisation comes in. What you need to look at is the relationship between something in your body at a cellular level and how it plays out when you don’t get the right nutrients. There is an association of different factors that increases your risk to experience a disease. Being able to manage the stressors in your life becomes important to managing those factors. It’s about looking at a number of genes in the pathway and the nutrients that affect that pathway. Understanding Your Genetic Risk Factors Professor Rodrigo Quinn believes that we need to close the gap between understanding our relationship with our body and mind, the dynamic connectome. While many practitioners don’t recommend genetic testing, it will actually be helpful. As long as you can feel empowered by getting this information, then get tested. Dr. Denise's mother passed away from Dementia. She herself has APOE 34. APOE is implicated in the risk for cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s Disease, and Dementia. There are no medications to compensate, but evidence shows lifestyle intervention can improve quality of life. APOE is a lipid or fat transporter. Most or about 60% of the population (Europeans and Caucasians) are APOE 33. This means they have an average risk for Alzheimer’s Disease or about 5%. Those with APOE 34 have up to a 20% risk. For those with APOE 44, their risk jumps up to 70%. Knowing your risk factors means you can start to do things earlier. APOE 44 is strongly associated with Alzheimer’s Disease, but it is not a cause. Nigerians have the highest frequencies for APOE 44, but they have the lowest onset for Alzheimer’s Disease. The main difference between Nigerians and other African populations with high incidences of Alzheimer’s Disease is lifestyle. Nigerians have low cholesterol, are active, and eat a high fiber diet. With lifestyle changes, even if you are APOE 44, you can bring your risk down to normal. By stacking things in our favor, through movement, diet, proper sleep, we can reduce our risk of expression. Dementia is not an older person’s disease. It starts as early as our 30s and 40s. APOE is linked to inflammation too. A lot of genetic variations are sorted as either good or bad. But these genetic variations may also have benefits. For example, those with slower MTHFR have less DNA damage and can reduce the risk of cancer linked with DNA damage. With the amount of research being done, we should watch this space as we learn more. In the meantime, genetic testing is worth looking at. Some things to consider including eating a high fiber, low glycemic diet, eating healthy fats, and checking whether you have a disrupted circadian rhythm. Your circadian rhythm is responsible for turning on and off genes at certain times. Those with APOE gene are shown to be better responders to exercise. Another gene to look at when it comes to cognitive decline is brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). BDNF is the gene important for regenerating neurons that we lose over our lifetime. Exercise has been shown to light up the brain and increase BDNF. You should also monitor your stress levels because BDNF suppresses the expression of BDNF. Genes Impact On Stress Levels Some of us would have a more stressful response to difficult situations because of the way we’re wired. People with genetic variations in Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) and have a slow COMT will be lacking in magnesium and B vitamins. COMT is responsible for breaking down dopamine, adrenaline, and noradrenaline. People with a slow COMT experience a heightened stress response. The positive side is that someone with COMT has a really good capacity for executive function and thinking. By understanding your genetic predispositions, you can be a bit more logical and do little things that can help you like taking magnesium. Coming up with the ingredients and the tools in your personal toolbox can help you navigate the changes in your life. Genes Role With Weight Gain Some people have a genetic predisposition towards weight gain. The FTO gene is one of the strongest predictors of weight. FTO is responsible for your ability to utilise fat as energy. There’s no easy answer to being able to lose weight, but that shouldn’t mean that you give up. There is no one diet for everyone. Maybe you’re more sensitive to sugar or you’re more sensitive to fat. The diet that would work for you would depend on some things. Don’t get stuck on numbers and how many kilos you’ve lost. Look at body composition and health. Other Factors To Consider About Your Genes Past traumas such as being bullied or exposure to toxins could also be factors affecting your health. Dr. Denise has a functional medicine approach where she looks at a whole host of things including sleep, and gut microbiome. When it comes to genetic testing, it’s
41 minutes | Jun 4, 2020
MHME 020: How To Beat 12 Causes of Brain Fog (Therapist Shares)
Get Clear On Brain Fog Signs, Symptoms, Causes, Test and Treatments and be sure to grab the Free Transcript What have I got to do to beat this brain fog? Whether you... Experience low mental energy? Feel like your living behind glass? That lack of clarity. The difficulty in focusing. Everyone’s experience is different. So, if you’re wondering how to bust out of this brain funk-feeling in your head, or you want to help someone who is suffering from these symptoms, then today’s podcast is just for you. In today’s Brain Fog: Symptoms to Treatment episode I address: What Does Brain Fog Feel Like What Are 5 Brain Fog Symptoms 12 Causes of Brain Fog Lack of Sleep Makes A Fuzzy Mind Chronic #Stress And A Tired Brain Hormone Changes Lead To Bad Memory Depression And Brain Fog Food and Nutrition Affects Brain Health Medication Can Make You Fuzzy Neurological Conditions Impact Clarity Poor Gut Health Means Poor Mental Clarity Fatigue Makes You Too Tired To Focus Toxins Are Toxic To Your Brain Alcohol Flooding Your Brain? Genetics May Up Your Brain Fog Risks Brain Fog Testing: What Do You Need To Do? Get Some Brain Clarity with #Treatments Recovery Is Possible The Biggest Takeaway About Brain Fog And Stress How's your concentration? Pfft! Out the door and into the….uh. What was I thinking again? Maybe you find yourself getting lost in a conversation and not in a good way. You have to read things over and over. How do you turn up in your life and for your family when everything feels like you’re living behind a pane of glass? Simple everyday words seem like a struggle. You might be experiencing the cognitive changes people often refer to as “Brain Fog” Brain fog isn’t a medical condition. But it is an experience lived by people. And it impacts their quality of life. There are symptoms, a cluster of symptoms that indicate whether what you’re going through could be brain fog- but that’s not really the area to focus on- more so- what can you do about it. The experience though varies from person to person. One person’s experience of brain fog could be very different from another. It could be very light and minor. Or it could be so severe and significant that it’s already an impairment to your life. How you are dealing with memory problems, poor concentration, and lack of mental clarity.... When it comes to your ability to do things such as drive a car, manage your finances, pursue your hobbies. Have fun interactions and make conversations. Know this one important thing. Brain fog doesn’t have to be a permanent fixture in your life. There are tests that you can do. There are treatments available. You don’t have to live the rest of your life behind that glass pane. Life can become clear again! So make your move. If you know the cluster of symptoms associated with brain fog then you’ll know whether or not you’re experiencing it. The next step is to understand what could be causing your brain fog. Because when you know what’s causing it then you know what to do next. It is often that the causes determine the action. Address the things causing your mental fogginess. Take charge of your brain health and get clear. When your mental focus is taking a dive, that’s the signal for you to dive in as well. Take things into your hands. Attack the causes associated with it. Because that’s what you have to be. You have to stay vigilant and safeguard your cognitive fitness for as long as possible. So that you can get control and live your life on your terms. About Our Host David Norris is an occupational therapist who has been in this practice for 20 years. He has dealt with a lot of clients who seek help with their memory loss problems. David began asking himself about how these people can get ahead of these problems. It is then that he started teaching his clients how to improve their brain health to prevent memory loss. David Norris is also the director and founder of Occupational Therapy Brisbane. Brain Fog And Stress What Does Brain Fog Feel Like Philosopher Gilbert Ryle’s “Concept of Mind” is an argument against principles that the mind and body are separate. Brain fog is a cluster of different symptoms and experiences. It is a silent phenomenon. To others, the people who have it look normal. For those living with it, it is a pervasive experience. They have less energy, retreat more, and are a bit depressed. Some people feel hungover, some can’t think clearly, and others find simple words become such tongue twisters. One person’s experience of brain fog is entirely different from another’s. What Are 5 Brain Fog Symptoms Memory problems. Lack of mental clarity or difficulty of putting things together. Poor concentration and attention. Inability to focus. Mental fatigue or an impairment to do things that matter. 12 Causes Of Brain Fog Lack of Sleep Makes A Fuzzy Mind A lot of people aren’t sleeping properly. Broken, interrupted sleep means you don’t get the brain flushing benefits. When you get a deep nourishing sleep, your brain undergoes a wash and rinse cycle associated with mental health. Chronic Stress And A Tired Brain Stress plays a role in impacting your immune system. It triggers a whole host of changes that ultimately lead to mental fatigue. Stress makes it harder for you to think and rationalise things. Hormone Changes Lead To Bad Memory Thyroid dysfunction can manifest as brain fog. It can impact your sense of arousal, memory, and mood. Memory loss and hormonal changes are both associated with menopause. Hypothyroidism or not having enough hormones can lead to difficulty with concentration and also affects verbal memory. Depression And Brain Fog People with depression experience a cognitive dysfunction. Reaction times are slower. The ability to solve complex problems and have a sense of clarity are affected. Comparing 2005 with 2015, there’s been an 18% increase in people living with depression. Older people ages 65 and up are living with the profound impacts of depression. Food and Nutrition Affects Brain Health Brain fog can be a symptom of the lack of a nutrient rich and diverse diet. A healthy thriving brain needs vitamin Bs such as vitamin B12. Allergies and your consumption of food with preservatives or additives have been documented to be associated with brain fog. A MTHFR genetic mutation leads to low folate levels in the body and impacts methylation, which is responsible for allowing people to operate at high levels. Lifestyle factors set you up to experience brain fog. Medication Can Make You Fuzzy I put together some time ago a ‘Fuzzy 17’ list of medications associated with brain fog. Blood pressure lowering drugs have gained notoriety for that. Too little, too much, or too much of a multitude of different vitamins can be a factor for you to experience brain fog. People who undergo cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation report having a foggy brain. Neurological Conditions Impact Clarity Having anxiety impacts cognitive dysfunction. Neurological disorders such as Multiple Sclerosis and Dementia, autoimmune diseases like arthritis and lupus, dehydration, and conditions such as Meniere’s, all contribute to poor cognitive fitness. Poor Gut Health Means Poor Mental Clarity We’ve already looked at the relationship between the gut-brain access. Sensitivities in the gut and the immune system response affects your cognitive well-being. Gut health is an important variable contributing to your brain fog. Fatigue Makes You Too Tired To Focus Fatigue can be due to too much physical exertion or a lack of incidental movement Obesity and grief are both associated with fatigue. Toxins Are Toxic To Your Brain Toxins are in our environment. Some mimic the functions of hormones. Some block and mimic the activities associated with sugar regulation. Alcohol Flooding Your Brain? Alcohol has after effects and your liver has to deal with it. Sustained alcohol consumption and abuse will impair your cognitive performance. Genetics May Up Your Brain Fog Risks The MTHFR snip or single nucleotide polymorphism is a genetic variable associated with cognitive dysfunction. Brain Fog Testing: What Do You Need To Do? How is your mental health? What is your diet like? Are you getting enough physical activity? Or is it too much? Are you taking any medications or supplements? Are they doing the job they need to do? Check for symptoms such as hair loss, changes in skin moisture, weight gain, or changes in your nail conditions. Get some blood work done. Check your fasting glucose levels, any underlying infections, or nutritional deficiencies. Test your kidney, liver, and thyroid function. It might be worthwhile to get an MRI or CT Scan. Investigate your allergies or consider getting a sleep study. It might be worthwhile to get an MRI or CT-scan. Start a diary of your symptoms, the things happening in your life, your stress, your mood can help you keep a track record that could be the start of a relevant conversation later with your GP. Get Some Brain Clarity with Treatments The causes determine the actions needed to be taken. For example, if low iron levels are causing your poor cognitive function then add iron supplements or change your diet. For medication problems, work with your GP to determine what’s best for you. Get some good quality sunlight exposure. Connect with others and find joy and pleasure in the activities you do in your life. Recovery Is Possible Brain fog does not need to be an ongoing life condition. You can do something about it. Pay attention to the signs and be vigilant about safeguarding your cognitive fitness. You can tackle this, cut your risks down, and gain control. Put together the right team to develop a personalised action plan relevant to your particular situation. Get right to it now and cut down your experiences of memory health loss and brain fog. Previously Recommended Resources https://alzres.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13195-018-0449-9 https://www.cdc.gov/aging/data/subjective-cognitive-decline-brief.html https://www.cedars-sinai.edu/Patients/Health-Conditions/Subjective-
29 minutes | May 20, 2020
MHME 019: How To Stay Sharp For Life: 11 Tips From Famous Rockstar's Health Routine with David Norris
Follow the rockstar life and stay sharp for life No one would expect that living like a rockstar can help your memory health. Yet we’ve seen that in a musical rock legend. That’s right. It’s the Rolling Stones’ lead singer himself, Mick Jagger. An enigma of health and vitality, Mick is reaching his eight decade of life. It hasn’t stopped him from giving life everything he’s got. He’s still rocking it out on the stage. He’s still kickboxing, cycling, and running many miles around. He’s still putting his focus and intensity and working hard to get what he wants. He’s shown this when just a couple of weeks after heart surgery, he goes back to practice for his rescheduled tour. That’s Mick Jagger for you. But what can we learn from his lifestyle choices? You see, there’s a lot of tips we can pick up after analysing the things he does. I’m not saying that you have to live exactly the way he does. Well, that’ll be quite a feat! But making small changes in your life will have a huge impact. Simple things do add up over time. I’ve already talked about how simple, daily actions can compound and lead to powerful changes in your health. Mick is a living, breathing example of that. It’s about consistency and commitment. Plus, the willingness to do the hard work. You don’t have to completely overhaul your entire life. As we’ve also learned, habits take time to stick. What I ask is an openness to learn and to change. Change always starts there. And what better way to start your path to improved memory health than following a legendary example. You can still get yourself back, get your health back. All it takes is to make the move now. So get ready to start livin’ the healthy rockstar life. In today’s show, you will learn the 11 tips to stay sharp for life that we can learn from Mick Jagger. Episode Highlights Living A High Intensity Rockstar Life 11 Tips For Staying Sharp For Life Tip # 1: Stay Sharp By Starting Early Tip # 2: Consistency Is Key To Keeping Your Memory Sharp Tip # 3: Focus On Your Goals, Stay Healthy Tip # 4: Check If Your Memory Is Still Sharp Tip # 5: Staying Sharp Means Putting In The Work Tip # 6: A Good Diet Equals Sharp Memory Tip # 7: Add Supplements For A Strong Mind Tip # 8: Increase Your Heart Rate Tip # 9: Lay Out A Rich Movement Buffet Tip # 10: Don’t Forget To Relax Tip # 11: Limit Alcohol For A Mentally Sharp Mind The Biggest Takeaway about Rockstar Tips for a Rockstar Life DOWNLOAD THE PDF TRANSCRIPTION About Our Host David Norris is an occupational therapist who has been in this practice for 20 years. He has dealt with a lot of clients who seek help with their memory loss problems. David began asking himself about how these people can get ahead of these problems. It is then that he started teaching his clients how to improve their brain health to prevent memory loss. David Norris is also the director and founder of Occupational Therapy Brisbane. Rockstar Health Tips Living A High Intensity Rockstar Life Mick Jagger has been living as a rockstar for six decades.. His health and vitality has been the subject of articles and investigations. He had to get heart surgery for a leaky heart valve in 2019, recovered in 6 weeks, and was practicing for his rescheduled tour. He has been known for his high intensity when it comes to workouts and performances. He made the choice to do the hard work to get the results he wanted. His father coached him from an early age on the fundamentals of achieving and sustaining physical strength and endurance. 11 Tips For Staying Sharp For Life What can we learn from Mick Jagger about how you can keep your memory sharp as we age? It’s not about smashing your guitar or flying off the stage. You can get satisfaction that you are doing things to stay sharp because you can. Tip # 1: Stay Sharp By Starting Early Mick was influenced by his dad from an early age about the importance of maintaining your physical health. If you didn’t start early, you can kick it into gear throughout your midlife years. Physical exercise has associated benefits with preventing cognitive decline. A study found that men in their 40s who are unable to complete 10 pushups have a higher risk of experiencing a cardiovascular event. Tip # 2: Consistency Is Key To Keeping Your Memory Sharp Mick Jagger has shown that he’s committed to turning up to his events and doing the hard work around food, movement, balance, meditation, etc. Now, that’s being consistent. His daily actions support his ability to always get up on the stage and consistently perform. Tip # 3: Focus On Your Goals, Stay Healthy Be laser focused on your goals. Do you know why you are doing what you’re doing? Mick always did the things that are purposeful to him. Mick does this because he wants to keep doing the activities that really matter to him and are purposeful to him. He has a goal and to reach that he has to keep doing the lifestyle strategies that allows him to live the life he wants. Tip # 4: Check If Your Memory Is Still Sharp Get routine medical checkups to be proactive in identifying any health issues and get early intervention. What would have happened had Mick not done the routine check up and missed treating his leaky heart valve? Talk to your doctor to know where you stand and take action. Think about getting a memory health checkup. (link to previous episode) Tip # 5: Staying Sharp Means Putting In The Work Just like Mick, invest time and energy to improve your cardiovascular capacity. Know your goals then put in the hard work to reach them. Build a team around you to advise you on good exercise strategies. Tip # 6: A Good Diet Equals Sharp Memory Eat whole foods. They’re right next to the natural source. Remember the benefits of eating whole foods. Mick chose to eat organic because it was found that organophosphates are present in our food supply. High or low exposure to it has an impact on our health and can lead to cardiovascular disease, cancer, or impaired brain performance. A study found that plants that have been attacked by pests had an increase in phytochemicals. Phytochemicals make the plant colorful and packed with nutrients associated with better cognitive fitness. Mick eats primarily fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains. This is similar to the mediterranean diet. Tip # 7: Add Supplements For A Strong Mind Take vitamins when there’s a gap in your diet. Mick takes supplements that assist with endurance and cognitive functions. Everyone needs to be eating a beautiful, rich, nutrient dense diet. What are your macronutrient needs (protein, fats, carbohydrates) and make sure you are getting enough to meet those. Tip # 8: Increase Your Heart Rate Raise your heart rate and get into a better effort. Tip # 9: Lay Out A Rich Movement Buffet Incorporate movement diversity so that you challenge not just your heart but also other areas of your body. Mick did many things including kickboxing, cycling, and running. Consider taking up dancing to reduce your risk for cognitive decline. Develop a motor plan to execute and get feedback. Your brain will get rich and diverse information about balance and how you’re coordinating your body. A robust brain is one that is consistently challenged. Think of it as making regular deposits to your bank account, in this case, your brain account. Tip # 10: Don’t Forget To Relax Follow a regime to de-stress, and practice gratitude and positive emotions. Make time for yourself, and practice meditation or yoga. Look into doing a mindfulness-based exercise or do a one-on-one with a psychologist skilled in cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Tip # 11: Limit Alcohol For A Mentally Sharp Mind Cut back on alcohol consumption. You don’t have to completely stop drinking alcohol, but it’s better to consume it as a treat rather than drinking alcohol regularly. Previously Recommended Resources Podcast Episodes Podcast Ep 017: How To Make Lifestyle Habit Changes Easier So You Can Help Prevent Memory Loss Later with David Norris Podcast Ep 005: Food, Mood, Microbiome and Your Memory with Dr Amy Loughman Podcast Ep 010: Functional Movement for A Brain Fit Lifestyle with Matt Rutley The Biggest Takeaway about Rockstar Tips for a Rockstar Life You don’t have to have rockstar resources or be a rockstar yourself. Start with one of the tips in mind rather than trying to do all 11 tips. Quotable “It starts with a commitment. A commitment to making things better, putting a little bit of effort against one of these things.” - David Norris What was your BIGGEST takeaway from this episode? All the best David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
32 minutes | May 7, 2020
MHME 018: Memory Loss Test: Why You Should Check Your Risks For Memory Loss [Yearly] with David Norris
A personalised memory loss test should be done every year. The sooner you test your risk factors for memory loss, the sooner you can respond. When drastic changes are already happening, it becomes harder to correct. Do you know someone who’s had a sudden change, almost as if they flipped over.. You can be caught off guard and surprised. Wondering what caused all of this to happen and why did it happen. You can pull out all of your hair trying to get to the bottom of it. Go to so many doctors. Do so many tests, bloodwork, scans, the works. But it’s all just a way to eliminate what it isn’t. Even with all the research and evidence we have, the picture we have is still incomplete. Yet, it doesn’t mean we should wait and let things get worse. Appreciate the complexity of the mechanism of memory loss then ACT Prevention is still best. If you’ve listened to my other episodes, you know I’ve talked about how lifestyle choices play a role. How you live your life, when it comes to exercising, sleeping, and eating can either harm or help your memory health later. You can choose to make positive changes or continue down the path of memory decline. Part of proactively choosing health includes identifying your risks. If there is a framework that lets you check the areas associated with memory loss as you get older. Then you can keep tabs on your memory health. You can compare whether there are changes that would later lead to dementia. A memory loss test should be done every year. Think of it as part of your annual physical. I know, I know. But shouldn’t it be? You’re probably already used to doing the tests regularly required at work. Why shouldn’t you also include checking your memory health? Memory loss is one of the reasons affecting older people’s ability to live a happy life. If that’s a future you want to avoid, then a test must be done. Be active and take charge of your memory health. Avoiding memory loss is a possibility. All it takes is for you to choose. In today’s show, you will find out the risks for memory loss and get a personalised view on where you stand through a memory health checkup. Episode Highlights The Approach For Testing Memory Health Benefits Of Getting A Personalised Memory Loss Test Test To Prevent Memory Loss Test To Identify Your Personal Memory Loss Risks DOWNLOAD THE PDF TRANSCRIPTION About Our Host David Norris is an occupational therapist who has been in this practice for 20 years. He has dealt with a lot of clients who seek help with their memory loss problems. David began asking himself about how these people can get ahead of these problems. It is then that he started teaching his clients how to improve their brain health to prevent memory loss. David Norris is also the director and founder of Occupational Therapy Brisbane. Personalised Memory Loss Health Test The Approach For Testing Memory Health Different lenses and different frames of reference are used when diagnosing the cause of an illness or disorder. Tests and doctor consultations are done to rule out what an illness isn’t. Your body influences the performance of your brain. There are so many things happening that it can be difficult to pinpoint which influences one over the other. It is your basic nature to group things or cluster things together. Context, environment, and other variables drive how we look at things. It is the fault of thinking things in boxes. A more global or holistic understanding that looks at many different systems and moving parts is needed to reduce your risk for memory loss. There are likely other factors that impact memory health that we don’t know yet. Benefits Of Getting A Personalised Memory Loss Test Things are complicated when it comes to memory health. The risk factors for late onset dementia includes a lot of factors associated with increasing one’s risk. The APOE gene puts people at higher risk for developing dementia. Lifestyle choices and environmental factors can influence the mechanisms at a cellular level. The mechanisms that affect your memory health destiny aren’t that clear and the growing body of evidence surrounding treatment methods is incomplete. When you understand where you stand, what your familial risks are, and what your lifestyle risks are, you can get a handle on it and start working with the right team to find the best strategies for improving your future outcome. Test To Prevent Memory Loss Find a suitable dietary intervention that answers your needs. Do a yearly memory health check, especially for those over 40 years of age. The sooner you get into a trajectory of change, the sooner you can correct changes happening in your body. This lets you avoid reaching the point when things become harder to correct. Have a chat with your doctor to go through the known physical and physiological culprits that can be checked. You are the navigator of your own health. Test To Identify Your Personal Memory Loss Risks Figure out what are your personal lifestyle risk factors. Your daily physical exercises, sleep, and diet can be either harmful or helpful to your memory health. Creating an urgency of the need to change increases your inclination to take action. You should be prevention-minded rather than wait when memory loss is already happening. Having a marker that detects any overt change in a person’s cognitive abilities is a helpful tool. It’s important to know where to start and have a framework that looks at a cluster of areas associated with memory loss later in life. Previously Recommended Resources Books Behave by Robert Sapolsky Podcast Episodes Podcast Ep 012: The Surprising Impact Of Lifestyle Changes For Better Health That A Doctor Wished All His Colleagues Knew About with Dr Dexter Shurney Podcast Ep 002: Do You Know These Risks For Memory Loss? Podcast Ep 001: How To Prevent Memory Loss The Biggest Takeaway about Causes of Temporary Memory Loss You should have a cognoscopy every year so that you’ll know where you stand, what your risks are, and take immediate action against those risks. Quotable “I fundamentally believe that we need to improve our own capacity to be our own navigators.” - David Norris What was your BIGGEST takeaway from this episode? All the best David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
37 minutes | Apr 30, 2020
MHME 017: How To Make Lifestyle Habit Changes Easier So You Can Help Prevent Memory Loss Later with David Norris
Good lifestyle habits lead to better memory health Even small changes to improve your life, building good habits, can have effects that add up to a point of... Better health, better cognitive function, and a better life. Your choices will bear fruit. Just like my mango tree. Who doesn’t love mangoes? The sweet smelling fruit is just so good. My family’s mango tree is an old tree, about 90 years old. The tree stopped bearing fruit a few years ago. It’s been neglected. Fungal growth is spreading around. So we pruned. We planted. We attacked the fungal growth. We made changes here and there. Fortunately, it wasn’t too late to do something about it. Then things started to get better. No, much better! The tree started producing so many fruits that I’ve more mangoes than I‘ve chutney jars, Thai salads and gelato boxes. Yum! Your cognitive fitness is much like the mango tree.- But don’t leave it before it’s too late To be at your peak, to help prevent memory loss starts with the right nurturing, personalised to your situation The small changes in your lifestyle really do matter. Our daily habits add up to a bumper crop of memory health later in life. Habits are powerful. You probably don’t even realise you were doing them. That’s because they’ve been ingrained in your life, in your routine. Harness that power. Imagine being armed with habits that reduce your risks for memory loss. You become more confident. You go into battle ready armed to live life fiercely- on your own terms. Raar! What an image, right? But how do you go about creating and living with those good, daily habits? It’s hard to consistently make good choices that stick. There’s a way though. A way to learn how to successfully build new habits. Six principles that will lead to new, powerful habits. As long as you’re resolute. As long as you’re willing to keep at it. As long as you’re willing to keep grinding. You have your goal, your vision. And I know you can reach it. It is never too late to start. Do you really want to deprive your community of ALL that you can be? In today’s show, you will learn the 6 facets of how to build successful habits. Find out also what is the most often neglected element key to habit formation. Episode Highlights It’s Never Too Late For Change Setting The Right Goals For Developing Behaviour Repetition Leads To Successful Habit Formation 6 Principles For New Habit Success Quick Exercise For Finding Purpose The Biggest Takeaway about Key Lifestyle Factors For Better Health DOWNLOAD THE PDF TRANSCRIPTION About Our Host David Norris is an occupational therapist who has been in this practice for 20 years. He has dealt with a lot of clients who seek help with their memory loss problems. David began asking himself about how these people can get ahead of these problems. It is then that he started teaching his clients how to improve their brain health to prevent memory loss. David Norris is also the director and founder of Occupational Therapy Brisbane. Building New Habits It’s Never Too Late For Change My family's 90+ year old mango tree was able to bore fruits after years of not doing so. The tree had been neglected and was experiencing some fungal growth. Support and some tending helped it to thrive again. There is still the opportunity for your body to be primed to achieve as much as possible. Poor conditions increase the likelihood of memory loss happening again. It is never too late to start correcting your illness. Changing our diet can have a dramatic impact on your gut microbiome resulting in improved health and being. Short exercises will release endorphins and give you improved endurance and focus. Meditation can easily be used to tackle stress. Setting The Right Goals For Developing Behaviour Goals are amazing. But set it too high and you set yourself up for failure. When you fall short of your goals, it’s easy to turn back to what you were doing before and give up. Not having goals though is like going on bushwalker track under dark conditions without a torch. The key is to narrow your vision and take each step at a time. The step-by-step, methodological activity will help embed that new behaviour. Repetition Leads To Successful Habit Formation Old habits can sneak in and make you undermine your commitment to developing good behaviour like eating healthy. You feel guilt and shame. It erodes your sense of purpose, self, and strength to keep going. You want good behaviour to transform into good habits. Committing to repetitive action will set you up for success. Habits can deal with anything. You do them even unconsciously. 6 Principles For New Habit Success Setting up supportive environments allows you to build things that trigger the new behaviour. Leverage context by keeping things simple. Do not overcomplicate things. Eliminate friction or resistance by removing other choices or tasks. Put in place reward systems to support behaviour. Practice and repetition makes a habit stick. Having a sense of meaning to why you’re doing something is a powerful motivator. Quick Exercise For Finding Purpose Before starting, it’s important to be non-judgmental about yourself and be open. Think about what your family member will say about you at your funeral. Think about what your co-worker or community member will share about your impact in their lives. Think about what a stranger who has heard about you would say about you. This exercise will help you figure out what is the most important thing for you. What are the changes that need to be made for you to become that person they all talked about? You can still grow into the person you want to be at the end of your life. Previously Recommended Resources Articles The Science of Habit, October 2015. David Neal, Ph.D. Jelena Vujcic, MPH Orlando Hernandez, Ph.D. Wendy Wood, Ph.D. http://www.washplus.org/sites/default/files/resource_files/habits-neal2015.pdf Exercise dose and quality of life: Results of a randomized controlled trial., Arch Intern Med. 169(3): 269–278. Corby K. Martin, Timothy S. Church, Angela M. Thompson, Conrad P. Earnest, Steven N. Blair (2009) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2745102/ Effects of interval training on quality of life and cardiometabolic risk markers in older adults: a randomized controlled trial. Clin Interv Aging. 2019;14:1589–1599. Published 2019 Sep 4. doi:10.2147/CIA.S213133 Ballin M, Lundberg E, Sörlén N, Nordström P, Hult A, Nordström A. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6732517/ Regular exercise and the trajectory of health-related quality of life among Taiwanese adults: a cohort study analysis 2006-2014. BMC Public Health. 2019;19(1):1352. Published 2019 Oct 23. doi:10.1186/s12889-019-7662-8 Chang HC, Liang J, Hsu HC, Lin SK, Chang TH, Liu SH. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6806516/ Long-Term Impact of Caregiving and Metabolic Syndrome with Perceived Decline in Cognitive Function 8 Years Later: A Pilot Study Suggesting Important Avenues for Future Research. Open J Med Psychol. 2013;2(1):23–28. doi:10.4236/ojmp.2013.21005 Brummett BH, Austin SB, Welsh-Bohmer KA, Williams RB, Siegler IC. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3952276/#!po=65.0000 Gonzalez, C. (2006). The European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). Public Health Nutrition, 9(1a), 124-126. doi:10.1079/PHN2005934 https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/public-health-nutrition/article/european-prospective-investigation-into-cancer-and-nutrition-epic/F506B4D995930AD84F74289B5F16D132# The Microbiome and Mental Health: Looking Back, Moving Forward with Lessons from Allergic Diseases. Clin Psychopharmacol Neurosci. 2016;14(2):131–147. doi:10.9758/cpn.2016.14.2.131 Logan AC, Jacka FN, Craig JM, Prescott SL. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4857870/ Books Atomic Habits: The life-changing million copy bestseller by James Clear Want to get 1% better everyday? Then this book may be just the next step for you. "A supremely practical and useful book, James Clear distils the most fundamental information about habit formation, so you can accomplish more by focusing on less." -Mark Manson https://amzn.to/2twTRnB Podcast Episodes Podcast Ep 005: Food, Mood, Microbiome and Your Memory with Dr Amy Loughman Podcast Ep 008: How Your Gut Health Affects Your Brain and Memory Health with Scott C Anderson The Biggest Takeaway about Key Lifestyle Factors For Better Health Memory Health and making changes to help your body to achieve as much as it can is still possible. Remember the fruitless mango tree that bore again even when it was over 90+ years old. Quotable “Success takes time. Building these habits into your life takes time. These habits that make you into the gorgeous human being that you will be and are, will take time” - David Norris What was your BIGGEST takeaway from this episode? All the best David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
26 minutes | Apr 22, 2020
MHME 016: 9 Causes of Temporary Memory Loss And What To Do About It with David Norris
Memory loss is not a one-way street. Cause of temporary memory loss can be reversible. But just because it’s temporary doesn’t mean you should not take it seriously. Far from it… Temporary memory loss is much like a garden, there are always threats to your plants. Infections, bugs, frost, soil conditions, lack of nutrients- wrong planting time- over watering. These all can impact your plant’s health in the short term. Wilting leaves, lack of flowering and fruit, It really struggles to get through daily “garden life” You could say there’s a lack of energy. Anyone will tell you … Leave your plant too long in these conditions and they really struggle to bounce back In fact they may turn up their roots, kick into plant failure and die Gosh I’ve seen a few plants go this way.. ( Who hasn’t? ) Causes of temporary memory loss can also act much the same way Yes, memory loss is a potentially life threatening issue. By now if you’ve listened to other episodes you’d be aware of how your daily lifestyle choices can create the conditions which can lead to mild cognitive impairment and potentially dementia. It’s the small steps leading ultimately to big life (memory loss) consequences. This makes it vital to pay attention to how you live your life, today. Your memory has its ups and downs - that’s normal right. BUT, act with urgency to cut down the causes of temporary memory loss NOW. The symptoms and their causes are like beacons directing you to where things need to change. The more you wait the greater the impact on your memory. Neglecting the root causes of temporary memory loss can lead to bigger problems that are harder to treat and improve later. So, the time to start is right- NOW. Sure there is a lot going on - but isn’t that always the case. How can you make time for yourself for small positive steps? In today’s show, you will learn the causes of memory loss and the actions needed to reduce your risks and live a brain fit life. Episode Highlights Memory Loss Isn’t A One-Way Street Skill Acquisition And Performance Over Time 8 Signs Your Memory Health Changed 9 Factors Associated With Memory Loss Treating Temporary Memory Loss The Biggest Takeaway about Causes of Temporary Memory Loss DOWNLOAD THE PDF TRANSCRIPTION Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Host David Norris is an occupational therapist who has been in this practice for 20 years. He has dealt with a lot of clients who seek help with their memory loss problems. David began asking himself about how these people can get ahead of these problems. It is then that he started teaching his clients how to improve their brain health to prevent memory loss. David Norris is also the director and founder of Occupational Therapy Brisbane. Temporary Memory Loss Why Memory Loss Isn’t A One-Way Street Experiences of memory loss and mild cognitive impairment mean that we are 6x more likely to progress to dementia. Memory decline is a life threatening issue and is the biggest threat to healthy and happy aging. Your memory sways between having normal operations to adverse conditions. Poor conditions increase the likelihood of memory loss happening again. How We Learn: Skill Acquisition And Performance Over Time As you get older, your ability to learn new skills and recall information takes more time. Your historical information and ability to know more become more robust as you age. The 8 Signs Your Memory Health Changed Forgetting names or faces. Forgetting conversations. Irritability reflects changes in memory performance. Getting stuck while doing a task. Forgetting why you went to a room or place. Your attention or ability to recall events clearly is impacted. Forgetting the content of what you just read. Having trouble recalling dictation or number sequences. The 9 Factors Associated With Temporary Memory Loss Medications that lower your acetylcholine levels will increase your forgetfulness, reduce your concentration, and result in a foggy brain. What you eat affects the functions of your brain. Alcohol and smoking are both associated with cognitive impairment. Having more than one risk factor has an amplifying effect by increasing your risk for dementia. Depression can affect our ability to focus and experience pleasure with doing tasks. The stress hormone, cortisol, is released during times of anxiety and it can lead to a type of loss of brain function. Memory performance is also impacted by infections. Hypothyroidism contributes to a reduction in mental arousal. Strokes and concussions have a temporary impact on memory health or can even lead to post traumatic amnesia. People that underwent surgery or chemotherapy reported experiencing lack of clarity or brain fog. How To Treat The Causes of Temporary Memory Loss Treatment involves treating the root causes that lead to it. For example, if the root cause is alcohol, a reduction in alcohol consumption will be key. The changes should be treated as life threatening issues. It’s easier to treat something at the start and not when it has deteriorated further. The best approach is to live a life aligned to a brain healthy lifestyle. Before taking action with regards to your medications, have an open conversation first with your own doctor about the influences of those medications and whether there are alternatives available. Previously Recommended Resources Articles A longitudinal study assessed lifestyle activities, potential confounding factors of cognitive decline, and reversion of mild cognitive impairment and found specific lifestyle activities may play important roles in MCI reversion in older adults. Reversible predictors of reversion from mild cognitive impairment to normal cognition: a 4-year longitudinal study. https://alzres.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13195-019-0480-5 Books Psychobiotics Revolution by Scott C Anderson Memory Wise by Dr Anne Unkenstein Practical guidance to people who worry they are losing their memory. The book explains how memory works and the changes that can occur as we age. It explains the sort of health, attitude and lifestyle factors that can lead to fluctuation in memory and provides practical tips to minimise their effects. Podcast Episodes Podcast Ep 005: Food, Mood, Microbiome and Your Memory with Dr Amy Loughman Podcast Ep 012: The Surprising Impact Of Lifestyle Changes That A Doctor Wished All His Colleagues Knew About with Dr Dexter Shurney Podcast Ep 001: How To Prevent Memory Loss The Biggest Takeaway about Causes of Temporary Memory Loss Memory Health and treating and reversing causes of temporary memory loss is much like a garden Quotable “Leave your plant too long in these conditions and they really struggle to bounce back” - David Norris What was your BIGGEST takeaway from this episode? All the best David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
69 minutes | Apr 16, 2020
MHME 015: How To Deal With Life Crisis and Change: Powerful Lessons and Tips with Prof. George Jelinek
In this show Prof. George will share with you his own personal journey of surviving multiple sclerosis and how the power of mindfulness has helped him and others. Getting a life threatening diagnosis can be devastating. Your entire world gets turned upside down, and you feel isolated and powerless. There is a point when you are in denial and refuse to acknowledge what’s happening. Or you get angry. You get angry at everyone and even yourself. How you react can have an impact on how things turn out later on. But what a lot of people don’t know, a state of non reaction can be beneficial to dealing with your crisis. In today’s show, Prof. George shares with you his research on lifestyle factors and reducing risk on neurological conditions, of which he has first-hand experience. Prof. George and I go deep into: Facing a Major Life Crisis Tools for Navigating Disruptions and Overwhelm The Benefits of Meditation Opportunities during the Coronavirus Crisis Getting Started with Meditation Amplifying your Practice On top of that, we engage in a fabulous conversation on how being an observer and avoiding judgment is crucial at this time when the world is facing a massive crisis brought upon by Coronavirus. For everyone out there, you won’t want to miss this. You always have a choice no matter what the world brings. There are opportunities that even a crisis brings. The key is to become more present and reconnect. You may have gotten used to how life has been and how things work. But life is cyclical. There are always ups and downs. So let go and accept that there is victory in accepting and opening yourself up to change. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Professor George Jelinek is a professor and founder of the Neuroepidemiology Unit at the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health. This unit expressly evaluates modifiable risk factors that predict the progression of multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease. He has served since 2017 as the Chief Editor for Neuroepidemiology in the journal Frontiers in Neurology, and he was Founding Editor – and is currently the Editor Emeritus – for Emergency Medicine Australasia. Prof. George also has the distinction of being the first Professor of Emergency Medicine in Australasia. Between 1987 and 2018, he published more than 150 peer-reviewed papers, seven book forewords and eight books, and received more than 20 research grants. He is author of the life changing book, Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis, which recounts his research on the disease and how he applied what he discovered to his own life. Living With and Surviving Multiple Sclerosis Facing A Major Life Crisis Prof. George talks about his mother who died from multiple sclerosis. He shares about finding out he had the disease also. The scientific literature on treating multiple sclerosis was limited at that time and included few immune modifying medications. Professor Jelinek formulated a comprehensive lifestyle plan for himself he had adhered to until now. When facing a massive life adjustment, being in denial and refusing to face the reality of it is common. A mentor helped Prof. George to face the challenges of the life threatening diagnosis he received. It’s important when facing a really big challenge to give it space, be vulnerable, and allow things to come up rather than try to control the whole thing. Tools For Navigating Disruptions and Overwhelm Life is cyclical. There are highs and lows, and you have to learn to accept that. When you look back in your life, you’ll realize that the difficult times are when you experienced tremendous growth. The notion that people are stable and unchanging needs to be challenged. You need to understand that after this crisis your life won’t go back to the way it was. Meditation is a big part of Prof. George’s toolkit for dealing with moments of overwhelm. Research such as the work on mindfulness-based stress reduction by Prof. Jon Kabat-Zinn has already proven the benefits of regular meditation. Meditation takes a lot of practice to get good at watching without judging. It develops a compassionate acceptance of the good and the bad. The skill of being able to navigate the ups and downs of life accrue results over decades. Prof. George shares his foray into transcendental meditation when he was young and before he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The Benefits of Meditation Meditation brought a gradual change in Prof. George’s attitude towards life and provided him with insight into things. The choice on how to respond and react is a byproduct of meditation. Meditation allows you to become more of an observer rather than reacting. Those dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic are feeling isolated and powerless, and it makes them feel that they don’t have a choice. The Opportunities During The Coronavirus Crisis This crisis has given you the time to do something you really enjoy doing and go deep into it. There’s a need to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. Pain, anxiety, and friction only come up when you perpetuate thoughts of restrictions and not having a choice. Getting Started With Meditation To avoid nervousness and embarrassment, it’s better to start by joining a group. Having an experienced meditation teacher is good. But there are a number of meditation apps providing guided meditations. Meditation and exercise have both been proven to grow new cells in the hippocampus while the amygdala shrinks in size. Regular meditators have been able to mitigate the consequences of aging. Meditation can possibly be the antidote to dementia. Meditation allows you to become more resilient and grow and thrive during difficult times. Coming into the space and practicing are good ways to start with meditation. Muse meditation headband and the USC app are tools that also provide biofeedback for those who are more analytical and need data. But at some point, you wouldn’t need the tools and can continue the practice on your own. This time is a like a forced opportunity to reconnect with ourselves and our micro community. During this crisis, time has slowed down for people. Little things now assume some importance. It all comes down to having an attitude of thinking that there’s an opportunity here and you might as well make the most of it. There is victory to opening yourself up to opportunities. Amplifying Your Practice Prof. George lives an unstructured life and has learned to let go into the rhythm of life. He swims when he wants to and runs when he wants to. Some may need the space or triggers to transition into and build up their skill and behaviour. Practice is one thing. Being able to apply being non reactive and compassionate into your day-to-day life is the next step. Having a partner that supports you is important. It’s easy to do your practice and eat healthy when you’re in a retreat, everyone is doing it, and your food is prepared. Continuing that when you’re back home and exposed to people who might undermine your choices is harder. After this crisis, you might start to question the things that you used to do. There is a great impetus for us to thrive and grow as a society now. It’s better to be less tuned in to social media where it’s easy for people to spread confusion and misinformation. Focus on and reconnect with real things instead. Recommended Resources From The Show Evidence Catalogue of Prof George’s work listed at the University Of Melbourne https://findanexpert.unimelb.edu.au/profile/155521-george-jelinek OvercomingMS.org : https://overcomingms.org/about-us Books and Other Resources Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis by Prof. George Jelinek https://overcomingms.org/resources The Centre of Contemplative Mind Society: http://www.contemplativemind.org/practices/tree 5 Podcasts To Help with How To Deal With Life Crisis and Change Podcast Ep 013: How To Take Care Of Yourself At Home During the Coronavirus Pandemic with The Merrymaker Sisters Podcast Ep 011: Your Body’s Wear and Tear and Memory Loss: The Biggest Things We Get Wrong with Prof. Zoltan Sarnyai Podcast Ep 009: How Stress Damages Your Memory Health And What To Do About It with Thomas G. Guilliams Ph.D Podcast Ep 008: How Your Gut Health Affects Your Brain and Memory Health with Scott C Anderson Podcast Ep 005: Food, Mood, Microbiome and Your Memory with Dr Amy Loughman You can reach out to Prof. George Jelinek on Facebook. To get more resources or find your community, go to his website. So what was your BIGGEST takeaway from this episode? Time management tips, mindset? Practices for more space? Comment below, I’d love to hear what worked for you. All the best David Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
43 minutes | Apr 9, 2020
MHME 014: How to Make a Strong Mind and Body with Vegan Fitness Coach Kate Galli
In this show vegan fitness super star Kate Galli will share with you how to make a strong mind and body. In fact Kate reveals what she does with her clients so you can Achieve the mindset and motivation to claim power over your choices in Food and your Life Game Have a strategy for winning BIG with your health goals Kate’s clients rate her for good reason and she shares her tips and strategies today. Bad habits are hard to break. You’re used to them, and you’re already comfortable. When you’re surrounded by so much unhealthy food, it can be difficult to make the healthy choice. As for exercise, who has time for that? Living with this kind of life and mindset can have a compounding effect on your body and mind. At some point, you may be forced to change your lifestyle because of an illness or other issue. But it’s always best to start early by starting now. In today’s show, Vegan fitness coach, Kate Galli, shares with you her insights on how to make a strong mind and body as well as revealing her fierce love for the planet. Kate and I delve deep into: The Journey to Better Health Staying Motivated on the Path to Fitness The Healthification Podcast As A Tool for Health Education Developing Awareness of Sustainability Conscious Decisions Lead to Stronger Bodies The Starting Point to Good Health and Beautiful Mind Not only that we go deep into understanding how you can create more time, be more effective with building lasting habits that doesn't mean sacrificing fun. Plus More. A great conversation not to be missed. Living a healthy life doesn’t have to be complicated. Life should be fun and easy. By making little choices towards building a strong body and mind, you get results that push you further to those bigger goals. You are responsible for your health alone. No one can make the decision for you. There may be barriers that stop you, but it’s no longer about not having the discipline or the time. So step up into your life, reclaim your health, and move forward with confidence. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Kate Galli is the host of the Healthification podcast and owner of Strongbodygreenplanet.com. She has a strong passion for creating a beautiful body, mind, and planet. Strong Bodies and Beautiful Minds The Journey to Better Health Kate talks about turning her passion for fitness into a career. She switched to a vegan lifestyle and plant-based nutrition to advocate for animals. The journey is not a straight line. Sometimes you end up going backwards and question yourself whether you can still do it. Staying Motivated on the Path to Fitness It’s important to have self-compassion and come from a place of working with your body as a team. Motivation comes from being able to align actions with your values and beliefs. Self-awareness is needed to constantly check and ask whether things are still working out. Know that in time, with all your experiences and growth, you will be a different person. What’s helpful in the past may not be helpful today. It’s important to ask the question, “How’s that working for you?” You could ask that question for every facet of your life. The Healthification Podcast As A Tool for Health Education Kate’s definition of health has evolved and for her, health involves the individual, the community, and the environment. Kate is concerned about sustainability in terms of individual fitness, nutrition, and the community, so that people can keep being healthy for the rest of their lives. The relationship with the environment is the missing piece to the conversation about health. Developing Awareness of Sustainability The journey to sustainability can be overwhelming. Whatever your reason for having a lifestyle change, don’t set the bar too high. She recommends making everything simple, easy, fun, and non-restricting. To avoid being overwhelmed, she suggests telling people what is the number one, most important step. Conscious Decisions Lead to Stronger Bodies Admitting the lack of discipline is the first step towards being successful. To make conscious decisions, become self-aware of the things that have tripped you up in the past and planning for those situations. You have the choice to ask for what you want. What you feed your body is 100% your responsibility. Doing simple things such as meal preparation or exploring the local market can cut down your risk of making bad food choices. Simple habits deliver results and the results compound over time. The Starting Point to Good Health and Beautiful Mind The starting point is your why, your reason and goals for choosing this. Ask yourself whether the result is worth the actions you need to take consistently. Build your identity belief that you are a person that exercises so that you’ll set aside time for that. Do temptation bundling. Bundle a habit you want to do with a habit you have to do. The way you reframe your mindset about exercise is important. Recommended Resources Articles: Katherine Milkman Publications: http://www.katherinemilkman.com/ The fresh start effect: Temporal landmarks motivate aspirational behavior https://pubsonline.informs.org/doi/abs/10.1287/mnsc.2014.1901 Beyond good intentions: Prompting people to make plans improves follow-through on important tasks https://muse.jhu.edu/article/615107/summary Watch out for rigidity.. Creating Exercise Habits Using Incentives: The Tradeoff between Flexibility and Routinization https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/a3f9/fd231a481b088cdb0c351d8672fdbd3cda33.pdf ….”Thus, while routines may be a common and important component of many lasting habits, encouraging overly rigid routines can undermine habit formation.” Books: Atomic Habits: The life-changing million copy bestseller by James Clear https://amzn.to/2twTRnB Check out the Healthification podcast. You can reach out to Kate Galli on Instagram or Facebook. To learn more about following a plant-based diet, here’s a free resource or just go to Kate’s website. So what was your BIGGEST takeaway from this episode? Time management tips, mindset? Love to hear what worked for you. All the best David Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
52 minutes | Apr 2, 2020
MHME 013: How To Take Care Of Yourself At Home During the Coronavirus Pandemic with The Merrymaker Sisters
It’s clear, we’re in the middle of a global crisis. With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic spreading worldwide, self-isolation and the disruption of daily routines are leading to stress and anxiety. In this show you’ll learn about: Why self-care should be front and center of your life right now How to take care of yourself physically, emotionally, mentally, cognitively, and socially In today’s show, you will get practical information on how you can take care of yourself amidst the coronavirus epidemic. News feeds are filled with negative reports and dismal stories about the selfishness and greed exhibited by people. The current situation is both overwhelming and disheartening, especially to a lot of people who feel powerless at this time. But you can cut through this cycle of fear and worry. You may find yourself facing unfamiliar circumstances, but you have the chance to grow into this new world. You start by taking care of yourself. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guests Emma and Carla Papas are known as The Merrymaker Sisters. Their work involves finding love, integrity, and compassion during the journey to health and well-being. After quitting their desk jobs, Emma and Carla went on a journey of self-discovery to find magic and follow the bliss. They’re the founders of MerryBody Online Studio, which provides unlimited access to yoga, pilates, and meditation classes. Their website also gives free healthy recipes that nourish your body. The Merrymaker Way of Life The Sisters’ Journey To Self-Care Emma and Carla talk about their self-loathing, self-hate, and unhealthy relationship with food. Making the decision to follow their bliss. They took a break and got training for yoga and pilates. They started their MerryBody studio and changed their mindset to feeling good and letting go. Acknowledging The Negative Feelings You have the right to feel the way you feel. Remember that you are not alone in this. Moving physically allows Emma and Carla to move through their emotions. Movement allows them to let go of the responsibility of carrying the world on their shoulders. Moving Through This Bad Time The easiest thing to do is to constantly come back to the breath and breathe deeper. Falling into the anxiety and stress will allow you to find your anchor. Utilize the power of mediation. Dancing like a crazy person and going wild will help you from being stuck in your head. Breathing Exercises For Listeners The first step is a kind of grounding or sinking into your bodies for one minute. The grounding exercise involves using three breathing techniques. There’s usually resistance when starting out, so it’s best to pick one breathing technique and focus on that. It’s important to check in with yourself and always come back to your practice. You can get so caught up in the news nowadays that you can forget to do what makes you feel okay. The experience of deep breathing fires neural signals up in your brain and triggers calmness. The disruption to your daily routines makes you more vulnerable to stress. Breathing exercises can help you reclaim some sense of power. The language in your head can be a pathway to doing self-care first aid to yourself. Doing Self-Care Remember to always fill your cup, so you can give better to the people around. Practice yoga or pilates at home and eat nourishing food to take care of yourself. Avoid dehydration by having a big bottle of water at your desk. Create a sense of safety by staying connected with family and friends through voice messages or video calls. Get creative and do the things you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time. Create bumpers around the information you digest to avoid exhaustion. The Beginning Of A New Opportunity There is an opportunity to create something good for the community and practice altruism. Emma and Carla opened up MerryBody for free to get everyone moving while at home. Recommended Resources Articles: John O'Donohue - https://www.johnodonohue.com/ The On Being Project had a wonderful interview with John O’Donhue. Here is a podcast with John prior to his passing. The fresh start effect: Temporal landmarks motivate aspirational behavior Katherine Milkman https://pubsonline.informs.org/doi/abs/10.1287/mnsc.2014.1901 Books: John O’Donohue books Anam Cara: Spiritual Wisdom from the Celtic World https://amzn.to/3bey5Fq To Bless The Space Between Us https://amzn.to/3bey5Fq You can reach out to the Merrymaker Sisters on Instagram or Facebook. New members get free access to MerryBody Online Studio Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? We have a lot of resources and resources to help you stop avoidable memory loss. If you’re interested to learn more about our services and programs, just go to the website. Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
52 minutes | Mar 26, 2020
MHME 012: The Surprising Impact Of Lifestyle Changes That A Doctor Wished All His Colleagues Knew About with Dr Dexter Shurney
When you think of medicine, the picture that often comes up involves prescription medication, surgery, and other conventional procedures. But these kinds of treatments only come into play when your body is already broken, so to speak. So conventional treatments act to fix whatever is broken. But this only puts you in a position of having to take medication for the rest of your life. You might find that picture grim, but that is the reality for a lot of people. However, recent studies have shown that there is a way to strengthen your body to enable it to do what it wants, which is to heal. This is where lifestyle medicine has stepped in and been at the forefront of this exciting opportunity. Your health should not be determined by your genetic predisposition. You can still do something. Only you can empower your own body to do something not even medication can do. In this show you’ll learn about: What is Lifestyle Medicine and why does it matter? Valuable lessons Dr Shurney has learned and vast data that he has collated through clinical, workplace and national campaigns In today’s show, you will learn the power of simple daily actions and how they can have a huge impact and health benefit. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Dr Dexter Shurney, MD, MBA, MPH, FACLM is President of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine and Editor of the Journal of Managed Care Physicians. He is also Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President of Clinical Affairs for Zipongo, a San Francisco-based digital health and wellness company. Dr. Shurney serves on numerous boards including: the Global Business Group on Health and the National Association of Managed Care Physicians. Dr Shurney is co-author of the book, “Integrating Wellness into Your Disease Management Programs.” Why Lifestyle Medicine The Trajectory That Led Him To Lifestyle Medicine Dr Shurney talks about shifting in specialty from general surgery to preventive medicine. He remembers hearing about lifestyle medicine while devising plans and protocols for chronic disease management. He shares how he got interested and applied lifestyle medicine to himself to treat diabetes and hypertension. He recounts facing rejection from family members who are also medical professionals when he told them about his experience. What Is Lifestyle Medicine Lifestyle medicine is a holistic approach to allowing your body to do what it wants to do, which is to become whole and well. Your body wants nutritious food and exercise. Doing the basics and fundamentals to strengthen your body to heal itself can cure 60-70% of chronic diseases. If you dial it up, you can even reverse chronic disease. Lifestyle Is Often Neglected Most people don’t know what it means to live a healthy life. People with a high genetic risk factor for developing dementia can reduce their lifetime risk by 30% through healthy lifestyle decisions. There is no medication in the market that can have the same impact. Two observation studies, one involving identical twins and another involving Japanese people living in the States versus those living in Japan, supported how lifestyle can be impactful in a powerful way. Simple Actions That Have Huge Health Impacts Adding bits of physical activity or healthy food choices can result in non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT). There are many ways to include physical activity in the office environment to avoid being sedentary. Add more potassium to your diet to counteract too much sodium. Stop cooking with salt and instead put salt on the table to season the food when you’re eating. Having a community of people around lifestyle medicine can empower people to make those healthy lifestyle choices. We live in a culture that pushes us in the wrong direction. Culture and environment drive the health and longevity of people. Integration and connection in all facets of our life, and creating a community that nurtures this are key. People living in Blue Zones have shown to benefit from health and longevity. Working At Zipongo The use of a digital platform allows them to reach millions of people around the world. Their goal is to provide food that is convenient, affordable, and looks good. Their Food Smart program suggests food based on your allergies, preferences, and the gaps in your nutrition determined by their NutriQuiz. Discounts are also available. Ordering from their platform removes the temptation of buying unhealthy food. New Frontiers In Lifestyle Medicine More and more physicians are becoming interested in lifestyle medicine. Research on gut microbiome shows lifestyle medicine has an impact on it. Gut microbiome also plays a role in how our brain functions. The bacteria in our stomach can affect our mood. Work around irritable bowel syndrome shows that it has a link to mental health. Other Podcast Episodes Here are the links to the other episodes mentioned in today’s podcast: Ep 005: Food, Mood, Microbiome and Your Memory with Dr Amy Loughman Ep 008: How Your Gut Health Affects Your Brain and Memory Health with Scott C Anderson Ep 007: How To Heal My Brain After A Stroke with Bill Gasiamis Previously Recommended Resources Articles: Kicking Back Cognitive Ageing: Leg Power Predicts Cognitive Ageing after Ten Years in Older Female Twins Steves, C. J., Mehta, M. M., Jackson, S. H., & Spector, T. D. (2016).. Gerontology, 62(2), 138–149. doi:10.1159/000441029 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4789972/ TwinsU.K: The longitudinal ageing research includes normal brain ageing, investigating the genetic and environmental determinants of cognitive decline, and age-related cardiovascular changes such as hypertension https://twinsuk.ac.uk/ Blue Zones: Informed and inspired by the world’s longest-lived cultures, Blues Zones help people live longer, better lives by improving their environment. https://www.bluezones.com/ Some associations of vegetarian diets with lower cardiovascular mortality and lower noncardiovascular, non-cancer mortality were observed. Vegetarian diets have been associated with more favorable levels of cardiovascular risk factors. Vegetarian Dietary Patterns and Mortality in Adventist Health Study 2 Orlich MJ, Singh PN, Sabaté J, et al. JAMA Intern Med. 2013;173(13):1230–1238. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.6473 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4191896/#!po=71.0526 Adherence to a healthy lifestyle at mid-life is associated with a longer life expectancy free of major chronic diseases Li Yanping, Schoufour Josje, Wang Dong D, Dhana Klodian, Pan An, Liu Xiaoran et al. Healthy lifestyle and life expectancy free of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes: prospective cohort study BMJ 2020; 368 :l6669 https://www.bmj.com/content/368/bmj.l6669 In the context of inherited (genetic) dementia risks it is possible to reduce your personal risk for dementia via your own personal actions: People at high risk of dementia who adopt healthy habits could be 32% less likely to contract the disease than those with an unhealthy lifestyle. The major international study, which involved researchers from the University of South Australia, analysed data from 196,383 adults and identified 1769 cases of dementia over a follow-up period of eight years. Association of Lifestyle and Genetic Risk With Incidence of Dementia Lourida I, Hannon E, Littlejohns TJ, et al. JAMA. 2019;322(5):430–437. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.9879 https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2738355 NEAT: Non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) Non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) is the energy expended for everything we do that is not sleeping, eating or sports-like exercise. It ranges from the energy expended walking to work, typing, performing yard work, undertaking agricultural tasks and fidgeting. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12468415 Lifestyle Medicine Evidence: The evidence behind lifestyle medicine. By no means a total compilation of evidence it is a cherry picked handful of some the evidence supporting Lifestyle Medicine https://www.lifestylemedicine.org/ACLM/Lifestyle_Medicine/Scientific_Evidence/ACLM/About/What_is_Lifestyle_Medicine_/Scientific_Evidence.aspx?hkey=ed4b4130-6ce9-41bb-8703-211bc98eed7f You can reach out to Dr Shurney on his LinkedIn or at the American College of Lifestyle Medicine. Visit Zipongo to learn more about their food programs. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? We have a lot of resources and resources to help you stop avoidable memory loss. If you’re interested to learn more about our services and programs, just go to the website. Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal profe
65 minutes | Mar 19, 2020
MHME 011: Your Body's Wear and Tear and Memory Loss: The Biggest Things We Get Wrong with Prof. Zoltan Sarnyai
How Chronic Stress Contributes To Cognitive Decline We often think of brain disorders as separate from the body. Anything that affects the brain occurred due to factors that affected the brain. But our understanding of the relationship between the brain and the body is far too linear to fully grasp the complex network of interactions that occur. We are seeing now how limited our knowledge is. More young people are dealing with depression. We believe this is due to an elevated allostatic load brought about by chronic stress. The thing about chronic stress is that your body gets exposed to cortisol for a longer period of time. This leads to a disruption of your body’s normal processes. To put it simply, your body being put under a long-term, stress-response state result in health problems. While completely eliminating stress from your life might be impossible, having a better understanding of how stress affects your physical and mental health is key. We’re at the tip of the iceberg, but we have to keep on digging. The more we comprehend this fascinating, multidirectional interaction between the brain and the body, the more we can unearth the many facets of what contributes to mental well-being. In this show you’ll learn about: How your environment is key to influencing our health and well-being throughout your lifespan How your body’s wear and tear is associated with your mental health What you can do to achieve an optimal level of living In today’s show, you will get a rich conversation on stress, allostatic load, and how it affects our cognitive fitness. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Prof. Zoltan Sarnyai is a medically-trained, PhD neuroscientist with real research interests in the neurobiological mechanisms of stress and psychiatric disorders including addiction, schizophrenia, and depression. Prior to his role in James Cook University in Australia, he was a university lecturer in pharmacology and a fellow of Pembroke College at the University of Cambridge. He has been awarded the Curt P. Richter Award by the International Society of Psychoneuroendocrinology for his work in neuropeptides and brain functions. He was also the recipient of the Dupont Warren Fellowship from the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Stress and Allostatic Load His Background In Neuroscience Prof Zoltan shares being disillusioned while in medical school and getting excited over research involving neuropeptides and brain function. An outdated book on stress research piqued Prof Zoltan’s interest. A research article on the impact of social hierarchy and general health among wild baboons opened Prof Zoltan to the idea of the environment influencing the body and brain. His Fascination In Mental Health And The Environment Our understanding of mental health and the brain in relation to the body has evolved over time. Brain disorders were seen as something related to brain function. The brain does not work in isolation, but there is a multi-directional communication occurring between the brain and the body. We don’t understand a lot about the interactions between the brain and the body. Now, we know that the gut microbiome has a lot to do with how the brain functions and the brain directs the local environment for these bacteria to change. How Stress Affects The Brain and Gut Chronic psychological stress and trauma affect both the body and the brain. Chronic stress leads to a leaky gut syndrome, which leads to bacteria interacting in the bloodstream. Immune cells react and activate our stress biology. The body develops more cortisol. Things in our bodies are interconnected in a nonlinear fashion making it more difficult to grasp. Variables That Contribute To Stress Resilience Our genetic makeup contributes to our susceptibility or resilience to stress. We have genes that are related to our biological stress axis. We can’t do anything about our genetic background, but we can do something about what happens to us, specifically during pregnancy. Not just environmental stress, but environmental toxins like alcohol and nutritional factors during pregnancy also play a role. A low-protein diet during pregnancy has lasting consequences in the physical and mental health of a baby. There’s also a long generational influence of the things that happened to our great grandparents that we see affecting their descendants. How To Achieve An Optimal Level Of Living Since we are already aware that stress, trauma, nutritional factors, and others have an impact on mental health, we can get started on prevention. Our focus on studying the genetic makeup of complex, chronic non-communicable disease will only explain a percentage of the condition but not all. Prof Zoltan talks about a study on mice that had the gene for Huntington’s Disease. Exercise and a complex cage environment were able to delay neurological deterioration in the mice. The early environment of a human is key to the development of the brain and mental health, with the first three years of life being critical. Nurturing makes a big difference. Early neglect has long-term consequences. Prof Zoltan shares the case of what happened in Romanian orphanages in the 1980s. A high-fat, high-carbohydrate diet is bad because it creates a low-grade, inflammatory response in the body. Exercise creates more newly-born cells in the hippocampus. Having more newly-born cells in the hippocampus contributes to better cognitive fitness. Thus, physical exercise helps to improve cognitive emotional and behavioural measures. The brain is very plastic. So while we cannot eliminate stress and trauma, we can devise interventions to help individuals recover. The Future Direction Of His Work Prof Zoltan shares his ongoing projects, one on integrating different biological measures into an index to predict either disease development or treatment response, and another on allostatic load and predicting mental illness. Allostatic load is the wear and tear of the body. It measures the dysregulation that happens in the body when the body is chronically exposed to cortisol, the stress hormone. An elevated allostatic load is being seen among young people between 15 and 25. There is a link between elevated allostatic load and mental well-being. Elevated allostatic load is associated with cognitive decline. Major depression is characterized by a certain degree of cognitive impairment. Since sleep increases our bodies’ ability to handle the challenges in the day, and stress hormones are highly biologically active, sleep research is expected to deliver exciting results. Previously Recommended Resources Prof Zoltan’s Research Portfolio: Zoltan’s research publication list can be found here: https://research.jcu.edu.au/portfolio/zoltan.sarnyai/ Episode 11 Articles and Publications: Salk Institute https://www.salk.edu/ Bruce Sherman McEwen is an American neuroendocrinologist and head of the Harold and Margaret Milliken Hatch Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology at Rockefeller University. He is known for his work on the effects of environmental and psychological stress, having coined the term allostatic load. A summary of Prof McEwen and Allostatic Load: https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/neuroscience/allostatic-load Prof McEwen’s current lab: https://www.rockefeller.edu/our-scientists/heads-of-laboratories/863-bruce-s-mcewen/ Allostatic Load and Cognition Associations of Allostatic Load with Coronary Heart Disease and Dementia in the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing D Cadar, J Abell, R Hackett, H Davies, D Llewellyn, G Batty, A Steptoe https://academic.oup.com/innovateage/article/2/suppl_1/271/5168920 Scientists Brains Change in the Antarctic: The role of the environment and how the brain changes: Brain imaging in eight polar expeditioners before and after 14 months of isolation showed that the volume of the hippocampal dentate gyrus was lower than that in controls. This may reflect the effects on the brain of prolonged social and environmental deprivation. Brain Changes in Response to Long Antarctic Expeditions https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc1904905?query=featured_neurology-neurosurgery Lonely Antarctic Expeditions Shrink People's Brains https://www.livescience.com/antarctic-expedition-changes-the-brain.html Books: Stress of Life by Hans Selye Sweedish Study: OverKalix Study: A Sweedish transgenerational study “The Överkalix study (Swedish: Överkalixstudien) was a study conducted on the physiological effects of various environmental factors on transgenerational epigenetic inheritance. The study was conducted utilizing historical records, including harvests and food prices, in Överkalix, a small isolated municipality in northeast Sweden. The study was of 303 probands, 164 men and 139 women, born in 1890, 1905, or 1920, and their 1,818 children and grandchildren. 44 were still alive in 1995 when mortality follow-up stopped. Mortality risk ratios (RR) on children and grandchildren were determined based on available food supply, as indicated by historical data.” Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%96verkalix_study” Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%96verkalix_study You can reach out to Prof Zoltan on his university’s research website to get an idea of his work and it also includes his email. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A sim
89 minutes | Mar 12, 2020
MHME 010: Functional Movement for A Brain Fit Lifestyle with Matt Rutley
Today’s fitness industry looks at exercise as a means of improving and maximizing performance. We see large biceps and stronger legs as indicators of a healthy body. This pushes us to have a compartmentalized view of movement that focuses on specialized activities, where we have a leg day or a chest day. But having a gym or simple fitness-oriented view limits your ability to be resilient, to be well-rounded. Basically it limits the potential of the exercises to challenge your cognitive abilities. Compare that with how “we” used to move, for example, our hunter-gatherer ancestors. Their movement isn’t just about working on one muscle group, one routine. A diverse and varied range of movement triggers brain engagement. It allows our brains to grow and mature new neurons leading to better memory health. This mindset about exercise and movement needs to change. It’s no longer about intensity. Having an awareness of the unique and challenging demands we can impose on our bodies to squeeze out more opportunities for neurogenesis is key. If we understand how neurogenesis works and how to prompt it, we have a better chance of preventing avoidable memory loss. Our brains can continue to build and maintain a rich network of neurons if we understand how the human body as an organism works. We have the chance to tap into this power if we want to. The truth is, we are meant to create and live a formidable life. In this show you’ll learn about: How we can squeeze more out of physical exercise by adding cognitive aspects to leverage neurogenesis Putting stress on the body through unique and challenging demands The phenomenon of movement poverty increasing our risks of sedentary dementia In today’s show, you will learn how to combine cognitive aspects to physical exercise to leverage neurogenesis and build a rich and dense hippocampus resilient to change. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Matt Rutley is a natural movement specialist in Australia. He is a bush skills instructor and the owner and head coach of health and fitness center, Stage Six. As one of the leading experts on moving your body the way it was designed to move, he has worked with clients of all ages including sporting teams, professionals, and Olympic athletes. The Case for Neurogenesis Getting Interested In Functional Movement Exercise and Its Role Matt shares his childhood of doing a lot of physical and mental work, and his exposure later on to physical training. Opening his own gym to give people the opportunity to do the things he was doing as a child led him to realize the backward approach to physical fitness and health. Diving into research into the human organism led to more questions. Our physical and mental well-being aren’t separate. What Is Critical To Be Able To Navigate Our Will We are the drivers to fixing our problems. Having an inquisitive mind is important to understand why our body works and reacts to certain ways. If you don’t impose a demand on your body, it will not get good at it. This is the principle Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demands (SAID). Your body adapts to what you ask it to adapt to. Be specific about what you want, why you need it, and how the two correlate. Have an awareness of our physical capabilities and an understanding of what you want. How To Get Better Transference In Life There are different kinds of fitness. We need to have a sustainable approach when it comes to exercise rather than being on edge all the time just to maximize performance. Most people don’t really have a good idea of whether they might be able to do something. Movement is the reason our brains exist. Exercise boosts brain activity. Leveraging Movement To Boost Our Hippocampus Movements that are complex and adaptive maximize neurological engagement. The lack of disease in Blue Zones and hunter-gatherer populations. Challenging ourselves more each time rather than getting used to a routine allows us to squeeze a bit more of the opportunities. Gamification and play-based activities provide a huge opportunity though there is resistance because of people’s perception that exercise is punishment. Changes happen when we put our body under stress to push the limits. Stress signals changes in our body. But too much stress leads to injury. Stress applied should be about purpose and application instead of reinforcing the no pain, no gain mindset. Understanding why you need to go through that struggle allows you to be informed about the type of struggle and dosage needed. The Problem With Mundane, Everyday Tasks Movements that are complex and adaptive maximize neurological engagement. If you have only one challenge, your body gets used to it. To be adaptable, we have to constantly shift the goalpost. High-intensity training essentially works to outdo inactivity, but the intensity is too much. It’s better to spread out burning calories throughout the day in many different ways and with different stimuli and tasks. This is why people during our hunter-gatherer era are healthier. Lowering The Risks For Sedentary Dementia Use an app to set a timer to get up and stretch. Uprooting ourselves entirely from our comfort zones would only make our bodies resistant to change. As our body adjusts, add a new demand that you can layer on. Adding variety such as changing the route or adding a different range of motion will add a new demand. Be brutally honest, practical, and realistic when goal setting. Aim for consistency and frequency. Cast a lens around a 6-8 out of 10 level of challenge to drive neuroplasticity or brain change. We are meant to be very formidable for life. Harness the Power of Neurogenesis Do the things you want to get better at. Things will only get worse if you don’t do anything. Be patient with your body, work with it rather than against it. There’s no magic bullet, but there’s a magic process. Previously Recommended Resources Articles: Psychobiotics in mental health, neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental disorders Cheng et al, (2019) https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1021949819300158 Melancholic microbes: a link between gut microbiota and depression? Prof T. G. Dinan & Prof. J. F. Cryan: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/nmo.12198 Books: Psychobiotics Revolution by Scott C Anderson Memory Wise by Dr Anne Unkenstein This book explains how memory works and the changes that occur as we age. You can reach out to Matt on his website to get an idea of the whole range of things they do. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
80 minutes | Mar 5, 2020
MHME 009: How Stress Damages Your Memory Health And What To Do About It with Dr Tom Guilliams
How well do you understand your body’s signals to make decisions about maintaining your health and preventing disease? Stress has a tremendous effect on our health and memory in a way that there is a downregulation in the signals sent by our brain to the rest of our bodies. There is a rich neurological symphony that comes under threat when we are stressed. Our healthcare system is focused on traditional treatment methods of medication and surgery. But evidence-based research has come up supporting how lifestyle medicine can prevent and even reverse chronic diseases. This is very crucial as the more we know how our bodies react to stress and how deeply it affects the cells, tissues, and organs of our body, the better we can help our bodies heal. Because ultimately, this is the reason our brains are sending these signals. In this show you’ll learn about: Whether we are doing the best approach to improving our health Evidence-based support on ways to heal and reverse chronic diseases Why and how lifestyle medicine works In today’s show, you will learn the mechanism of how stress affects our bodies and what we can do to improve our life. Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Dr Tom Guilliams has a doctorate in molecular immunology from the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. He has spent two decades investigating the mechanisms and actions of lifestyle and nutrient based therapies. He serves as an adjunct assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-School of Pharmacy and is VP of Science for Ortho Molecular Products. He is the founder and president of The Point Institute and has written several teaching manuals functional to the integrative medical community. He is the author of several publications, including The Original Prescription. Understanding the Human Condition Why Does Dr Tom Focus On Lifestyle Medicine ? Dr Tom has always been interested in biology and how the world works. Working with a dietary supplement company exposed him to non-traditional ways of asking questions and looking at connections between healing and lifestyle medicine. Access to research literature allowed him to continue investigating the healing properties of the human body. How Lifestyle and Environment Affects Our Bodies Our bodies will prioritize certain mechanisms, behaviors, and cellular performances that are most important when dealing with a stress response. The cumulative effect bad habits have on our bodies. The Signals Of Life We Should Pay Attention To The seven areas we want to look at - diet and nutrition, physical activity, stress response, circadian rhythm, environmental factors, hygiene and health factors, and purpose and community. The seven areas are interdependent and aren’t isolated from each other. Our Concept of Stress People’s perception of stress is tied to the the ability to control the outcomes they want to control. Most of the time stress has to do with time and responsibilities. How the Exposure to Stress Changes our Bodies There are two levels of the stress response - the fight or flight response and the HPA axis. An imbalance happens when a physical response is triggered when there is no physical need for the energy generated. Our body maladapts to the constant disconnect between our stressors and our physiological needs. Chronic Stress and Our Body Physiological functions in the body are downregulated by chronic stress. We learned to self-medicate through durational use of drugs and caffeine to distract ourselves from being under chronic stress. Our brain protects us from constant stress by downregulating leading to low cortisol levels. How Do We Get People to Take Control of Their Personal Habits and Routines to Reduce Chronic Stress Clinicians and patients need to know the importance of understanding signals and how nutrients affect the body. We have to empower people so they’ll realize that they make the choices on what they put in their body. We should shift our mindset from evidence-based medicine to medicine-based evidence. Our current system is not geared towards avoiding drugs or surgery. Answering a perceived stress questionnaire or doing a stress inventory are simple yet effective ways to increase awareness of stress. Think about what you can do about things that are NUTS - things that are New, things that are Uncontrolled, things that Threaten us or give us a Sense of disequilibrium. We need to think outside of the box and not deal exclusively with just cortisol or epinephrine. The Epigenetics of the Stress Response One generation’s stressors are passed down to the next generation. How we responded to stress while we were young affects our ability to deal with stressors later as we get older. Children do not produce Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which acts as a counter balancing beneficial hormone. This makes them more vulnerable to stress. Reducing Your Risk Your genetics or the healthcare system should not dictate whether you’re healthy or not. Healthcare professionals should believe and empower their patients to do the things they should do. Stress and the Hippocampus Stress impairs many hippocampus-dependent memory tasks. The ability to connect and have a robust memory is reduced. The neural behaviour at the heart of learning is under threat by stress. Stress affects our buffering capacity or our resilience to deal with changes. Resources The Original Prescription by Dr Thomas G. Guilliams with Roni Enten. The Role of Stress and the HPA Axis in Chronic Disease Management: Principles and Protocols for Healthcare Professionals: https://www.pointinstitute.org/shop/ N.U.T.S (Novel, Unpredictable , Threat, Sense of Control): Detailed summary article for GPs and Health Professionals: https://www.racgp.org.au/afp/2013/august/chronic-stress/ The recipe for stress are universal and so are the ingredients. Here’s a short summary of N.U.T.S.: https://humanstress.ca/stress/understand-your-stress/sources-of-stress/ A great article about applying N.U.T.S in education can be found in the Centre for Studies on Human Stress’s monthly publication Mammoth: https://humanstress.ca/Documents/pdf/Mammouth-Magazine/Mammoth_vol5_EN.pdf Perceived Stress Scale: PSS : https://das.nh.gov/wellness/docs/percieved%20stress%20scale.pdf The Holmes-Rahe Stress Inventory or Social Readjustment Rating Scale: (Stressful Life Events checklist. You can take the test here: https://www.stress.org/holmes-rahe-stress-inventory or learn more about the inventory’s development, evidence and application: (https://www.simplypsychology.org/SRRS.html) Stress effects on the hippocampus: a critical review Kim EJ, Pellman B, Kim JJ. Learn Mem. 2015;22(9):411–416. Published 2015 Aug 18. doi:10.1101/lm.037291.114 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4561403/ Stress and your Memory (Hippocampus) Goleman, D. (2006). Social intelligence: The new science of human relationships. https://psycnet.apa.org/record/2006-13172-000 You can reach out to Tom on his website, where you can also access his whitepapers and ebook. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
73 minutes | Feb 27, 2020
MHME 008: How Your Gut Health Affects Your Brain and Memory Health with Scott C Anderson
You’ve no doubt sat in your science classes ( gosh that feels like a long time ago) and learned about the theory of evolution. Quick refresher: It’s about how the fittest survive the harsh changes in the environment and comes out as the victor. But we regularly hear about new diseases, giving us more reasons to be vigilant about our overall health. How are we supposed to get through life as healthily as we could? With the spread of contagious diseases and health risks, our body needs a line of defense that would keep us immune and protected. Hold up, don’t get too stressed about it! We do have ways to protect our health, and it’s not just through supplements. Presenting... the armada of teeny-tiny microbiomes in our gut! That’s right! These microorganisms stand at the vanguard of all the dangerous battles that we face every day! Did you know that aside from shielding us from potential harm from our environment, they can also affect our cognitive processes? They do so much of the heavy lifting to break food down into body building, brain nourishing information. Yes, that’s right. And knowing more about how it all works can definitely help us all have sharper minds and better memory health.Let’s put your battle gear on as we learn from the National Geographic science communicator, Gut Bug Pioneer and author, Scott Anderson. He’ll tell us how to build on our natural line of defense and train it to fight at its best. I’m sure you’re now also asking, “How can I keep their numbers growing?” No worries, we got you. In this show you’ll learn about: The role of the gut microbes in your immune system How gut microbes affect your mental health How your diet plays a significant role in maintaining a healthy level of good microbes inside your body. In today’s show, you will learn how to optimise your health and cognitive fitness though the power of your microbiome! Let’s now power up our body’s line of defense and boost the bugs for brain power! Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Scott C. Anderson is a scientist who specialises in health and technology. He is the author of several science books, including Human Embryonic Stem Cells and co-authored multinational best selling The Psychobiotic Revolution. The Role of Microbes and Our Brain Health Why Do We Have These Bacteria? We can never get away from bacteria. They are ubiquitous and coat every surface of the earth. Certain bacteria grew with us, and we grew up with them in a way that was beneficial to both of us. A lot of them are unique to humans. These bacteria have become used to us. They help in protecting us from pathogens. Two Forms of Human Immunity First, the innate immune system is fighting bacteria in our environment. Second, the adaptive immune system helps us deal with things our body has never encountered before. This system functions more like hit or miss. How Can Bacteria Build Our Adaptive Immunity It takes a bacterium to fight a bacterium. We need to live together with our gut bacteria and recruit them to fight the pathogens of the outside world. It can be good or bad, depending on who is in charge. A lot of those bacteria are what makes a good set of microbes in our gut called microbiota. The Human Gut and Its Microorganisms The gut consists of the whole alimentary canal, starting from our mouth all the way to the anus. Our microbiome is composed of a broad variety of microorganisms that have specific roles to play within the alimentary canal. There are situations when some of the harmful bacteria, microorganisms and their metabolites can get into our blood system, especially when our immune system is down. That’s when we get inflammation, the immune system’s alarm bells are starting to ring. They can also get into the brain through the blood and cross the blood brain barrier. Bacteria associated with gingivitis have been found in people's brains living with dementia on autopsy. How Bacteria Can Affect the Brain First, it can affect the brain through the vagus nerve. The second way is through the immune system. The third is through the hormonal system through the HPA axis (hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenal gland). Now, researchers are looking into whether bacteria can get to our brain through the metabolites they produce. Drugs and Our Immune System Recent studies would show that some medications we are taking are fighting the bacteria; in the process, they are also killing our own cells. There is collateral damage when we try to fight bacteria and end up damaging our cells as well. How Can We Create a Healthy Relationship with Our Microbiome? One of the challenges is not knowing enough about probiotics. Some of the available supplements in the market cannot be trusted. However, we can get probiotics without resorting to supplements. We can do this by consuming probiotic foods like kimchi, yoghurt and sauerkraut. Changes in diet can lead to a more diverse microbiota. The more different species you have, the better. The Mediterranean diet has been strongly associated with reduced inflammation. Fish, the main protein source in the diet, has high omega 3 ( DHA= docosahexaenoic acid), and EPA = eicosapentaenoic acid) which is a key fatty acid for the brain. Several studies associate higher omega-3 intake with decreased age-related mental decline and a reduced risk of Alzheimer's disease You can also lower inflammation by feeding your gut bacteria fibre. Fibre! Fibre! Fibre! Oi! Oi! Oi! Almost every known chronic disease like cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and Parkinson’s have their roots in systemic inflammation. Many systemic inflammation comes from the gut. Aim to keep a robust balance of bacteria, as one pillar to supporting your memory health. There’s almost a upside for every single organ in your body, especially your beautiful brain. It’s a win - win game really. Happy Bugs = Happy Life Bacteria and Protein Build-Up Our immune system tracks down and identifies some of the building blocks of the proteins involved with bacteria. The immune system may be in charge of the goodness or badness that comes as a consequence. Our immune system may react differently depending on the medicine that will be given to a person. Food Recommendation Avoid foods which contain preservatives and emulsifiers and those that come farther than the source. Avoid foods with pesticides, herbicides and fungicides. These chemicals can be poisonous to your microbiome gut citizens. Try the Mediterranean, Nordic or Japanese diet. Eat whole foods and whole grains. Have as much fibrous food as possible. Resources The Psychobiotic Revolution by Scott Anderson with John Cryan and Ted Dinan Healthy aging and dementia: findings from the Nun Study: The Nun Study is a longitudinal study of 678 Catholic sisters 75 to 107 years of age who are members of the School Sisters of Notre Dame congregation. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12965975 How You Eat Directly Impacts Your Mood: New Scientist article: https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg24332460-500-how-what-you-eat-directly-influences-your-mental-health/ Gut and Mood Valles-Colomer, M., Falony, G., Darzi, Y., Tigchelaar, E. F., Wang, J., Tito, R. Y., … Raes, J. (2019). The neuroactive potential of the human gut microbiota in quality of life and depression. Nature Microbiology, 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41564-018-0337-x You can reach out to Scott on his website, Facebook, and Twitter account. You may also want to check out Psychobiotic Revolution to learn more about how microbes can affect your mood and help maintain your brain health. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not, here’s the link. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
60 minutes | Feb 20, 2020
MHME 007: How To Heal My Brain After A Stroke with Bill Gasiamis
Here’s How Bill Got His Brain’s Mojo Back Bill Gasiamis’s Personal Story of How He Healed His Brain After A Stroke There’s a famous saying that goes, ‘Health is wealth’. Like going to the bank and making regular deposits- the benefits build up over time. Easier said than done, though. It is challenging to eat right and stay active if it’s not ingrained in your lifestyle. But- when you draw down too much- the body and brain can take a hit. Sadly for some we wait until a major health event, 1- 2 Kapow! combination and all of sudden you’re on the floor. When our health is threatened, our entire life gets affected. I can think of so many unhealthy habits that lead to disabling and fatal consequences. Overwork, excessive drinking, smoking... The list goes on! Let’s not wait for your system breakdown. Today’s show with Bill Gasiamis is a real memory health warrior story of where it went completely pear-shaped to how he built and sustained brain optimising healthy habits. This show is for you if You’re pushing the red line You’re compromising on healthy routines Your sleep suffering You’re juggling life and feeling more stretched than Elasta-girl Stroke, Brain Bleed, Cerebrovascular Accident or CVA - how can you come back from the MASSIVE impact this has on your physical, mental and emotional abilities? In this episode, Bill Gasiamis shares his own experience with stroke and how his life has taken a turn for the better afterwards. He shares his key healthy habits, coping mechanisms and insightful lessons which were pillars of his recovery and now bedrock of his life. There is a lot we can learn from how Bill Gasiamis got his brain’s mojo back. Bill’s unhealthy habits he didn’t know were ruining his life (you might be doing them too!) How our beliefs about productivity can cause us to overwork and neglect our health How to change your habits and reclaim your brain after recovering from a disease Is there a single method to calming and improving your mind? The power of your brain to heal itself with the right nudges Today’s podcast will help you address how you perceive health, understand how your habits affect you, and move towards a healthier lifestyle for better brain health. Stroke survivor or not, there is a lot here for you to learn from what it means to make massive change and the benefits of it. You might just find healing too! Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest Bill Gasiamis is a four-time stroke survivor and founder of Recovery After Stroke. The community aims to help people heal their brains through a systematic process he has made himself. He also authored 7 Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Your Stroke and hosts webinars, coaching seminars and podcast episodes regularly. Healing the Brain After a Stroke The Wake-Up Call In 2012, Bill found himself overworked and complaining about everything being difficult. It was far from his upbeat and calm demeanour. In February, he experienced his first brain haemorrhage. It was an arteriovenous malformation. This incident was Bill’s wake-up call that his health was misaligned and he needed to do something with it. Perception of Health Before all the stroke attacks, Bill had always thought he was a relatively healthy guy. He would describe himself as driven, motivated and focused. Looking back, Bill says he only thought he was healthy back then. In reality, his habits consist of a few healthy habits and a lot of unhealthy ones. He had vices like excessive drinking and smoking and some other bad habits like lack of sleep and lack of de-stressing activities. On Being Overworked A huge reason why Bill wasn’t able to track his health is that he did not have enough time for it. Not acknowledging unhealthy habits and being busy are a deadly loop you are putting your body in. Becoming busy can cause you to overlook small habits which can affect your health quickly. Cultural and Historical Implications of Becoming Overworked Bill’s parents came from a poverty-stricken place after World War 2. Hence, when they moved to Australia, working many hours to bring in more income became their mindset. We can inherit beliefs and routines from our parents, such as how they view their work or how they produce outcomes. It’s important to realise that as humans, we need time off from work and our everyday tasks. How Habits Contribute to Health Many of us may already be overworked and into unhealthy habits now. Long-term habits are hard to change, and it can affect our health in the long run. The Fear of Losing our Brain Experiencing a stroke makes one fear for his/her cognitive skills. There is fear that the brain capacity will no longer be at par with how it used to be before the stroke. Reclaiming Your Brain through Healthy Habits Reclaiming your brain after a stroke involves acknowledging that they may be some parts you cannot control. Instead, focus on areas which you can control, heal, and improve on. Bill started by stopping all his bad habits like smoking and drinking. Additionally, he also avoided consuming inflammatory foods. Towards A Better Brain Healthier habits allowed Bill’s memories to come back and his brain to slowly heal. Starting and sticking to healthy habits doesn’t have a deadline. It will still benefit us at any time of our lives. Connection Between Mind and Body The body’s wellbeing affects the resilience of the mind and the heart. A well-balanced body also balances our emotional health and hones our decision-making skills. Ultimately, this will allow you to know which things you have control and no control over. Resilience Despite Risks Be okay with the fact that there are some things you have no control of. Do not linger on these and focus your attention on things you can control. It is through difficult times that we thrive and grow. From this, our brain and body will benefit greatly. Steps to Brain Health Build an effective support system. Get proper nutrition. Quiet the mind. Meditate, relax and always get quality sleep. Be grateful. No matter how hard it is, try to be thankful and give back to others. Finding Your Own Path to Brain Health There is no single method to quieting the mind and making it better. For some, meditation may work; for others, it may not. It’s all about connecting with yourself and figuring out what works best for you. There are several pathways to help the mind. Be curious and explore which one may work. Effects on Personal Relationship Stroke can cause changes in a person’s personality. It may suddenly make them more aggressive, thus resulting in more fights. It’s helpful to remain honest, patient, and open to each other at all times. For Bill, stroke has made his wife and him better at communicating and giving people space. Moments like this can also be a learning opportunity for our partners to grow as well. Dealing with Your Identity Recovering from a life-changing event such as a stroke can make a person develop a ‘growth mindset’—that is, wanting to take on several opportunities and discovering new paths. Do not force the people in your life to move in the direction you want for yourself. Surround yourself with people who will support the changes in your life. You can reach out to Bill Gasiamis on his website, www.recoveryafterstroke.com, where you can download his podcast episodes and his upcoming 10-step stroke recovery programme. He also has an Instagram account, @recoveryafterstroke, where you can send him a message about your concerns. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is, we'd love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not here’s the link. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
47 minutes | Feb 12, 2020
MHME 006: How To Make Physical Exercise Habits Stick with Dr Mel Davis
If you’ve ever failed to make a new habit stick, you’re soooo not alone on this one. New Year Habits - Schmabbits, that almost sounds like rabbits and they act like it, right? Start off bouncing with energy, follow a path, get distracted with other greener, juicer patches, wanders off and all of a sudden it’s breeding new ideas, guilt and all sorts of other charged up ideas about WHY it didn’t work. Well enough already! Don’t get me wrong, the new year ( or any other calamitous moment < BIG Health Event> in life) is the trigger for many people, maybe like you, to focus on what’s important, what you want. It revs the engine of possibility and hope so…. you set a plan, you get the gear, get the stuff to make it happen, you prioritise your focus and energy, you start. But, life gets in the way right? Yep, more likely than not, we end up forgetting about it or giving up on it. BUT, why does it work for some and not others. …I’ve often stared at the white wall and grabbed another Tim Tam and thought “Is there something wrong with me?” Maybe I’m not dedicated enough, maybe I’m not motivated, maybe I’m not… Sure, it takes dedication and commitment to form a new habit. There’s also a lot we can learn from neuroscience on how you can crack the new habit code. OK, time to put the Tim Tam down and turn it up because we're joined by Dr Melissa Davis of Renaissance Periodization. Dr Mel is World Champion martial artist, doctor of neuroscience and behaviour change coach. Martial Artist Champion + Dr of Neuroscience + Behaviour Change = Knockout Habit Show Exercise is no doubt a massive pillar to better brain health and Dr Mel offers up a recipe for achieving your goals. In the show, you’ll learn about What exercise does and why it’s an important liffe factor at any age - yes any age! The strategies and methods based in neuroscience you can use to make a physical exercise habit stick. Dr Mel shines a light on the big blockers to your success and what to do about them. How to pierce the veil on published information to see if it really does work and is it worth your time, energy and very likely dollars Dr Mel also busts a few nutrition myths along the way Today’s show will help you kick down the doors, throw old habits on the tatami mat and tighten your hold on what you really want. Here’s to forming memory health habits that stick! Listen To The Podcast Now. About Our Guest: Dr Melissa Davis has ten years of research experience in neurobiology, with her works featured in Scientific American. She is a lifelong Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu athlete and scholar, who has represented the United States in international Abu Dhabi World Pro Competition. She specializes in helping clients utilize tools in losing weight, gaining muscle, and performing. Make Your Physical Exercise Habits Stick Understanding the Brain There is a lot of information in classes and in scientific papers that are not accessible to people because they haven't been trained to read papers. Reading a science paper takes training to understand the statistics and jargon. The Role of Exercise in Longevity With retained muscle mass longer into old age, you get fewer chances of injuries that may lead to death or dependence on others. Through exercise, you get better cognitive function for a longer time. It increases the quality of life. Why Don't Our Exercise Behaviors Stick? What you want to do differs from what you're used to doing. The new year's resolution effect: People want to make a massive change all at once. The biggest mistake is wanting a fast process and fast results. Navigating the Space Forming a habit, or breaking away from it takes one step at a time—it takes time, work, and dedicated effort. Reward yourself for even the smallest achievement. The Guilt Realm Give yourself credit for making little changes. Don't beat yourself up for not being perfect. Taking responsibility for your failures prevents the external locus of control that takes away your capability to make a change. Engineer Success: 4 Tips To Make Your Habits Stick Take it in small steps. Start with three or four days a week, and then eventually every other day. Tie the habit with an activity that already exists in your lifestyle and schedule. Track what's gotten in your way this week and strategize how you will solve it for the next week. It's just a matter of finding ways to trick ourselves into doing it, sticking with it, monitoring how often we're doing it, and continuing to improve. The Importance of Social Support Twofold benefit: It's not only helpful for achieving goals, but it's also helpful for mood and longevity. Resistance Training and Nutrition Protein supports growth, and it also supports a better quality of life. Exercise, including resistance training, decreases the chances of developing cancer, according to the American Statistical Association. Anything where your muscles are contracting against resistance, is resistance training. Resistance training might be different from person to person depending on how long they've been training and the physical state in which they're starting. Resources Articles Yuan et al, (2012) An enriched environment improves cognitive performance in mice from the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain Role of upregulated neurotrophic factor expression in the hippocampus: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4302529/ Griñán-Ferré, et al, (2018). Environmental Enrichment Improves Cognitive Deficits, AD Hallmarks and Epigenetic Alterations Presented in 5xFAD Mouse Model https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6104164/ Vanessa Doulames, Sangmook Lee & Thomas B. Shea (2014) Environmental enrichment and social interaction improve cognitive function and decrease reactive oxidative species in normal adult mice, International Journal of Neuroscience, 124:5, 369-376, DOI: 10.3109/00207454.2013.84844 3 Resources to Help You Read a Scientific Paper Infographic: How to read a scientific paper by Natalia Rodriguez on Elsevier An easy read introduction: how to read a scientific paper from Science Buddies How to Read and Understand a Scientific Paper: A Step-by-Step Guide for Non-Scientists by Jennifer Raff on HuffPost Books Atomic Habits by James Clear The RP Diet For Endurance by Dr Alex Harrison, Michelle Hower, and Dr Melissa Davis Supplementary Materials RP Diet App and RP Coaching Renaissance Woman You can reach out to Dr Mel by sending an email to the Renaissance Periodization website. You may also connect with her on Instagram. Check out Dr Mel’s comprehensive review of the Game Changers documentary. Enjoy The Podcast? If it’s a “Oh Yes I did David!” Then please, do yourself a huge favour and subscribe to the podcast. 5 Star Review Worthy? If it is we’d love your review. It really does go a long way to help us reach and serve more people. Do you want to help other people prevent avoidable memory loss? Yes? One simple way is to share what you’ve learned today. Here’s How: Take a screenshot of the podcast, post it on social media, make a comment and link to the show, is one, very easy way to help cement your learning and brings you closer to action as well as gifting to others the seeds of better memory health! FREE Guide To Help Prevent Memory Loss Grab a free copy of the 9 Principles for Memory Health For Life CLICK HERE. A simple framework to reduce your risk for memory loss. Go on, what have you got to lose? Of course you can reach me, David Norris, here on the website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. To better memory health, David P.S. Did you get the free guide? If not here’s the link. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
47 minutes | Feb 6, 2020
MHME 005: Food, Mood, Microbiome and Your Memory with Dr Amy Loughman
In this day and age where everything is instant, it is crucial to take care of our mental and physical fitness. One of the ways to achieve a well-balanced and healthy mind and body is by taking care of what we eat. After all, we are what we eat. So for us to be healthy, we have to maintain a robust digestive system. In today's episode, we're joined by Dr Amy Loughman of the Food & Mood Centre. We’ll talk about the importance of the gut microbiome and how it affects and maintains our mental health. She will also discuss psychobiotics and how they affect our brain functions. Tune in to the show to learn how healing can start in our guts! About Our Guest: Dr Amy Loughman is a post-doctoral research fellow who leads the microbiome research team at the Food & Mood Centre. She is clinically trained in neuropsychology and is an expert in memory function and brain diseases. The Role of Gut Microbiome in Our Wellbeing Understanding Mood and Memory Changes There can be fluctuations across our lifespan, and a lot of them are normal. If you are experiencing low mood and other symptoms that are bothering you, it is not always a sign of dementia. Failures in your memory could be due to many things such as high level of stress. Depression can change the clarity of your thinking and the way your brain works. Importance of Nutrition and Sleep Sleep can maintain cognitive health and fitness. High levels of nutrition throughout the lifespan, and particularly as we age, can significantly affect our susceptibility to cognitive decline and dementia. Sleep, physical activity, and stress combined provide a risk profile for people in terms of brain health in their older age. What Is a Microbiome? It is usually referred to as the gut microbiome. The microbiome is a collective community of microorganisms that comprises mostly of bacteria, as well as fungi, algae, and other microscopic life forms. It is approximately a kilogram of massive microorganisms living mostly in the large intestine and throughout the digestive tract. It’s also important in the oral cavity. Recommended Diet for a Healthy Brain and Gut The Australian Dietary Guidelines is a useful resource. Some recommended foods are plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean animal proteins. Limit your consumption of processed food and snacks. Psychobiotics It is a gut-directed therapy that aims to target the brain positively. Probiotic: living organism or bacteria that we take to add to the community of organisms Prebiotic: a type of fibre that feeds the bacteria or the probiotic Symbiotic: a combination of the two There have been animal studies which show that specific gut-directed microbiomes changed their brain function and improved their behaviour. It is, however, tricky to recommend a particular probiotic or prebiotic. Maintaining the Robustness of Our Microbiome Take care of your physical health. Even if you drink antibiotics, the gut bacteria bounces back and replenishes with proper diet. Avoid foods which contain artificial sweeteners, emulsifiers, and preservatives. How Bacteria Communicates with Our Brain The vagus nerve connects the brain to almost all the organs of the body, including the gut. Bacteria produce short-chain fatty acids when they metabolize food. These byproducts can signal directly to the brain, as well as cells around the body, about the state of the gut. It signals the brain through the bloodstream that there's inflammation in the body. We can experience more inflammation as we age. We can mitigate this by keeping our health in check. How the Gut Influences Disease Process An inflammatory response is also a factor. Bacteria are involved in the accumulation of amyloid beta-protein, which accumulate in the pathology of Alzheimer's disease. There are bacteria present in the brain tissue of people who have died without Alzheimer's disease. The bacteria found were in quite high levels that correspond to bacteria in the mouth. It again suggests that it’s not just the gut bacteria but also the oral cavity. The Healthy Brain Project It is a project run by Florey students for the people of Melbourne who might be interested in knowing more about brain health and taking part in an annual survey. It seeks to understand the lifestyle and biomarkers that relate to a risk of Alzheimer's disease in healthy middle age. They are looking at the earlier part of life to see whether they can identify the factors that are increasing or decreasing the risk. They are also finding specific biomarkers to give an insight into how the brain changes well before symptoms emerge. The project aims to generate preventive strategies for factors that impact the gut microbiome and the brain. Resources Book Memory-Wise by Dr Anne Unkenstein Websites Gut Microbiota For Health Australian Dietary Guidelines You can reach out to Dr Amy by sending her an email. You may also connect with her on Twitter and Instagram. Check out the Mind Body Microbiome and Food and Mood Centre to know more about the microbiome and how it affects our wellbeing. If you enjoyed today’s episode, please subscribe to the podcast. If you have any questions or insights, please don’t hesitate to leave a review to help us reach more people in starting a discussion about memory health. Grab a free copy of the Memory Health Toolkit today and know what you can do to reduce your risk for memory loss. You can reach me on my website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
22 minutes | Jan 28, 2020
MHME 004: Do These Three (Plus) Areas of Your Life Need Attention Now?
Cognitive decline is affecting more people every year. However, you can do a lot to keep your brain functions in top shape. People need to look at three aspects of their lives and see what they can do to optimise their brain health. Welcome to the Memory Health Made Easy podcast. I’m your host, David Norris. In today's episode, I'll be tackling the three areas of your life related to cognitive function: physical activity, diet, and stress. You'll learn how to optimise each of these areas to keep your brain fit and healthy. You'll also learn about the importance of social connections. This aspect of your life can help you solidify the habits you need to protect your cognitive well-being. Listen to this episode now and empower yourself with the steps you need to take to fight against cognitive decline. How to Optimise Your Cognitive Function to Prevent Memory Loss The Rise of Dementia In 2015, 15 million people lived with dementia. The number of people struggling with dementia will double every 20 years. We might see more than 113 million people living with this disease by 2050. The total cost of dementia is 1 trillion USD, which will double in the next 10 years. Around 35 to 50% of people experience a subjective cognitive impairment. There are many ways to stave off memory problems and improve our brain fitness. Physical Activity and the Brain You do not have to hit the gym to get the exercise you need, as long as your whole body is working out. Make sure to have both cardiovascular and resistance exercises throughout the week. Proper exercise encourages the formation of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which helps the brain adapt and change. Exercise improves the blood supply of the brain. Exercises requiring coordination adequately challenges the brain. If you haven't exercised for some time, start moving to raise your heart rate. If you have a medical condition, contact your local medical practitioner about your exercise plans. Dietary Factors Diets rich in various colourful fruits and vegetables are full of phytonutrients that are essential for brain health. Get most of your fat intake from vegetables, nuts and seeds, but make sure that you get enough fat. Target 30 grams of protein per meal if you're under 65 years old, and consume enough energy sources such as carbohydrates and fats. As much as possible, avoid foods with additives such as pesticides, hormones or antibiotics. Try to adopt a diet close to the Mediterranean diet, which has powerful protective effects on the brain. Stress and Rest Stress hormones damage the ability of the hippocampus to store and manage memories. While low amounts of stress are useful, chronic exposure can impact your cognitive fitness. Stress also interferes with sleep, an essential activity for maintaining brain health. Sleep deprivation, which can come from chronic stress, limits the ability of glial cells in the brain to remove wastes. Performing a particular exercise a few hours before you sleep can improve your memory by as much as 30%. Stress reduction techniques include taking breaks, slowing down and engaging in meditation practices. Social Networks Aside from the three areas mentioned earlier, it's also essential to consider the richness of your social networks. The quality of your social interactions matters more than the quantity. A sound social support system allows you to sustain healthier habits like exercise, healthy diets and stress reduction. If you have any questions or insights, please don’t hesitate to leave a review below to help us reach more people in starting a discussion about memory health. Subscribe to the podcast to stay in touch! Thanks for listening! Grab a free copy of the Memory Health Toolkit today and start strengthening your brain building. You can reach me on my website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.
17 minutes | Jan 23, 2020
MHME 003: Do Brain Training Games Really Work?
From board games to puzzles and handheld games, we all look for ways to improve our memory and logic, response time and overall mental functioning. With the surge of brain training games that are conveniently accessible in our smartphones, it can be worth asking if they really hold any cognitive benefit. In today’s episode of the Memory Health Made Easy podcast, we’re going to explore and clarify some things about brain training games. We’ll talk about the eight-point checklist that can help us identify whether brain training is worth our time and money. In addition to that, I will also introduce the “narrow” and “broad” effects. To know more about the real-life benefits of brain training games and what you can expect from them, keep your ears open and make sure that you tune in to the show! How Brain Training Games Work Murky Waters Around the Cognitive Science of Online Games These games often have a cost involved. We rely on the validity of how well these exercises are going to translate to improved cognitive fitness. Narrow & Broad Effects of Brain Training The exercises in these apps have a narrow effect; in other words, it doesn’t go wider to other cognitive skills. For example, if we practise attention, it’s not going to translate to insight, awareness and judgement. Broad effect is the desired effect that translates to other cognitive skills and in different domains of life. Eight-Point Checklist: Determining Whether Brain Training Is Worth Your Money and Time Is there an established evidence history? Does it establish a personal baseline for you? Are they continually challenging? Does it target a specific skill set? Is it novel and engaging? Has it got auditory and visual components? Does it track your performance over time? Does it give you feedback on areas to focus on? Dual N-Back: The One Brain Exercise You Should Do Research findings are split about the effectiveness of these programmes. However, unlike many other training exercises, Dual N-Back, created by Susanne Jaeggi and her team in 2008, has been proven to transfer training results to other brain activities. A study done by John Hopkins University showed a 30% improvement in working memory using brain training. The optimal time to do the training is 1 to 2 hours before sleep. To maintain the cognitive gains, it’s essential to come back and dose up on this particular exercise over time. Make sure that at the core of what you’re doing, you’ve got good sound exposures to the Dual N-Back exercise. Can Brain Training Improve Memory? Science proves brain-training games can be an essential part of your toolkit in reducing the risk of memory loss. However, it is vital to look at the biological risk factors such as sleep, exercise, eating, social relationships and stress management, among others. If you have any questions or insights, please don’t hesitate to leave a review below to help us reach more people in starting a discussion about memory health. Subscribe to the podcast to stay in touch! Thanks for listening! Grab a free copy of the Memory Health Toolkit today and start strengthening your brain building. You can reach me on my website and connect with me on LinkedIn or Twitter. Disclaimer: The purpose of Memory Health Made Easy Podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor or qualified professional. This podcast is provided on understanding that it does not constitute medical or personal professional advice or services. Instead, we would encourage you to discuss your options with a health care provider who specializes in your particular needs.