GIVE YOUR BRAIN A BOOST (PART 3)
Living healthy means more than simply keeping your body free of illness. Keeping your brain healthy is every bit as important. What are some of the ways to ensure that your brain stays healthy? In our third part of the “Give Your Brain a Boost,” we will examine the nutrients your brain requires and everything from how to effectively get those nutrients to lifestyle changes. We will teach you these and other little-known secrets to energize your brain and increase your memory power.
LIVING A BRAIN-BOOSTED LIFE BRAIN FOODS: WHAT, WITH WHOM AND HOW
Other than via nutrients, what are some other ways of giving your brain a boost?
“Meals are a very big part of giving your brain a boost. ‘How you eat’ has a direct effect. It is important to savor your food, enjoy the experience and eat healthy,” points out Dr. Kiyoshi Oshima from Kyoto University.
Why do meals give the brain a direct boost?
“Each time we move our arms, legs or other parts of the body, the resulting stimuli pass through the spine until it reaches the brain stem. Similarly, stimuli from our five senses — sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch — also pass through the spine to the brain stem. A large proportion, fully 50%, of the total stimuli from the body comes from the lips, teeth, gums and tongue. The sensations of taste, smell and texture from inside the mouth are also transmitted to the brain. This implies that the quickest way to give your brain a boost is to move by eating and thereby stimulate your senses of taste and smell,” said Dr. Oshima.
What you eat, whom you eat with, and how you eat are also very important factors, adds Dr. Oshima. These factors improve your inborn senses and sensitivity to stimuli which, in turn, stimulate the brain.
“Nowadays, everyone in the family runs on different schedules. As a result, family members often do not sit together for meals,” continues Dr. Oshima. “I think many children are finding themselves by themselves at mealtime, alone in a lonely environment. Nothing could be worse for boosting the brain. Enjoying your meal is an important part of giving your brain a boost. Communication flourishes when you are with people you love or feel completely at ease with. That alone stimulates the brain’s pleasure center and gives your brain a boost.”
(Translated by Roy Mashima from Kokiku Magazine’s February 2003, volume 29, number 2 issue.)
(The information provided should not be construed as medical advice or instruction. Consult your physician before attempting any new program. Readers who fail to consult appropriate health authorities assume the risk of developing serious medical conditions.)