Top 7 Superfoods and Exercises to Keep Your Brain Healthy and Strong

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all sectors of the community, particularly those who were already suffering from poor health and chronic conditions. We now know that people of any age with certain underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and obesity are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. What’s depressing is that a lot of this could have been prevented. Poor nutrition/diet is one of the leading risk factors for chronic disease and accounts for nearly 75% of all deaths in the US alone. It can also lead to increased risk of cognitive decline as you age. As we’ve already seen in a previous blog, what you put into your gut (the second brain) will have a significant impact on how your first brain functions. So, in this blog, I’ve put together a list of “brain superfoods” that are readily available to support your body with the nutrients it needs to keep cognitive function and mental health at its peak. I have also included some brain ex...

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Introduction to Mindfulness | Part 2 Why does it matter?

with Cara Bradley Wholistics is pleased to present Cara Bradley for a short series on the what and how of mindfulness and why training your mind to pay attention on purpose is one of the most important things you can do to feel and perform your best.https://youtu.be/ODCGQDA-nHkCara has been both an entrepreneur and body-mind teacher for over three decades and is currently focused on building a "future-ready” mental wellness business. As a performance coach, she trained Fortune 500 companies, CEOs and elite college sports teams with her signature strategies to access optimal flow states. Cara is the founder of Verge Yoga Center and the author of On The Verge: Wake Up, Show Up, and Shine. https://www.carabradley.net...

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The Science of Yoga

I recently listened to an interesting podcast on Dr. Mark Hyman’s Broken Brain series about the science of yoga. This was a rather long podcast but it made a yoga believer out of me. Eddie Stern is a yoga teacher and author and he recently published his book, One Simple Thing: A New Look at the Science of Yoga and How It Can Transform Your Life. Yoga has been used for centuries for improving physical and mental health but how exactly does yoga do this? And how does yoga work?
Here are some of the highlights:

The author highlighted several studies conducted on the efficacy of yoga. One involved 68 participants and they found that sleeping diastolic blood pressure dropped by 4 points with an average drop of 7 points for both diastolic and systolic. In another study with middle school students, the yoga protocol raised grade point averages by 2.7% with 40 weeks of yoga vs. 40 weeks of a gym program. Yoga impacts the nervous system and the ability to have focused attention is dependent on...

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Why We Sleep – Matthew Walker Podcast Review

I was fascinated by a great podcast on Bulletproof Radio (Episode 616) with Matthew Walker, PhD who is the author of a recent best seller “Why We Sleep”. He is Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at UC Berkeley and a self-proclaimed ‘Sleep Diplomat’. Some of the salient points from this podcast included: Just sleeping enough hours isn’t sufficient. In addition to deep sleep, we need REM sleep (25% of sleep) and light sleep. REM sleep optimizes glucose regulation and deep sleep regulates blood sugar equilibrium. For learning and memory, deep and light sleep are optimal. And for our emotional and mental health, REM sleep is key.Temperature is a key factor in promoting the right sleep as our body needs to drop 2-2.5 degrees to initiate sleep and stay asleep. I personally sleep much better in a cool room/climate and this could explain why.Cognitive behavioral therapy is a key bio-hack that has been demonstrated to work for insomnia. It also has shown to decrease anxiety, depression an...

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13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do

There is an interesting series of podcasts called “Nobody told me” – and one of them featured Amy Morin, who is a licensed clinical social worker, psychotherapist andpsychology professor. She is the best-selling author of three books about “13 Things” you don’t want to do to help you and your family become mentally strong, happy and successful. Her TED talk on “The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong” has received record views – you may want to check it out.https://youtu.be/TFbv757kup4
Here are some of the highlights:

You hear so much about resilience and what people do to become resilient – but Amy says it’s more about what people don’t do rather than what they do (like getting rid of bad habits to keep people stuck and mentally unhealthy).
When Amy was going through adversity in her own life, she wrote a list of things not to do to maintain her sanity and published it online. This list was read by more than 50 million people which became the driver for her books. Her philosophy...

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Dr. Jason Fung: Fasting as a Therapeutic Option for Weight Loss

Dr. Jason Fung is a nephrologist and expert in the use of intermittent fasting and low carbohydrate diets for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. I’ve listened to over half a dozen of his webcasts and have always been impressed by his professionalism, as well as his evidence-based non-drug approach to treating diabetes. This presentation, delivered at the CrossFit Health Conference in 2018, shares how he has shifted his medical practices with alternative treatment methods as the traditional medical recommendation of drugs and dialysis did not produce the desired outcomes for his patients. His presentation objectives included: Understanding why long-term weight loss is so difficult;Introducing the concept of therapeutic fasting; andHighlighting some myths and misunderstandings associated with the fasting process. The modern eating pattern as Dr. Fung categorized it emerged in 1977 with the development of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (the US Food Pyramid). This changed the eating f...

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Introduction to Mindfulness | Part 1 3 Steps to Getting Started

with Cara Bradley Wholistics is pleased to present Cara Bradley for a short series on the what and how of mindfulness and why training your mind to pay attention on purpose is one of the most important things you can do to feel and perform your best.https://youtu.be/yQnujTjuCZcCara has been both an entrepreneur and body-mind teacher for over three decades and is currently focused on building a "future-ready” mental wellness business. As a performance coach, she trained Fortune 500 companies, CEOs and elite college sports teams with her signature strategies to access optimal flow states. Cara is the founder of Verge Yoga Center and the author of On The Verge: Wake Up, Show Up, and Shine. https://www.carabradley.net...

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Natural Ways to Heal Your Gut

I recently listened to an interesting podcast on inflammation and the gut offered by Dr. Elena Villaneuva at Modern Holistic Health. In one of their materials for the masterclass, they outlined the importance of gut function and how chronic inflammation leads to various diseases.
Here is a short summary:

Why is the gut so important to our health? Our gut not only digests food but makes the brain’s neurotransmitters and impacts 70-80% of our immune system. Proper digestion by our gut is necessary to break down food and absorb the nutrients. If you experience poor digestion like upset stomach, gas or bloating after a meal or from eating fats and carbohydrates, your gut is telling you it’s not functioning optimally.

Your brain sends signals to your gut and has the ability to influence the intestinal microbiota. In the same way, the gut has the ability to influence brain and behavior. A perfect example is having butterflies in your stomach when you’re nervous. So the good bacteria in yo...

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