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How to Save Your Brain

Losing your mind is the most destructive disorder that a human being can encounter. Most people who become senile and develop Alzheimers or other unchangeable form of brain degeneration are aware of it. The worst of it is: we do most of the damage to ourselves. The amount of information processed by your ten billion brain cells each second makes our most advanced computers look like children’s toys.Your brain controls everything, from the smallest wiggle of your toes to the momently balance of hundreds of hormones and the microscopically regulated metabolism of all the thirty trillion cells that enables you to think, feel and behave like a human being. When only a few thousand brain cells get damaged or die, it effects our whole body. Because of poor nutrition, pollution Synapse xt in our body, over-use of drugs and lack of exercise, progressive brain damage builds up. Our intelligence declines, memories fade, muscles atrophy, bones weaken, immunity is lost and we become aged and an easy prey for every disease.

Undoubtedly,the final solution to disease lies in the prevention of brain degeneration.The good news is that recent nutrition science have discovered ways to maintain and even improve brain function. In the average person, the first brain function to go is memory, starting at age 30 and accelerating after the age of 40.As long as you can store new information in long-term memory and recall it, you can change your behaviour, improve your skills and enhance your life. If that capacity declines, you become an automat, not able to learn anything new, forever re-enacting the habits and memories of an increasingly distant past.

In order to prevent this decline, it is good to know something about the structure of the neurons, which are the nerves in our brain. Each neuron consists of a stringy filament called a dendrite, then a cell body, then another stringy filament called an axon. The dendrite carries nerve impulses towards the cell body and the axon carries them away again. The nerve impulses carry information, much like the electrical impulses that carry your spoken information along a telephone line.

However, unlike phone lines, neurons are not connected to each other. The end of axon of each neuron stops near the ends of dendrites of other neurons. The gap between the axon and the dendrites is called a synapse. The transmission of nerve impulses across the synapse is accomplished chemically by the release of neurotransmitters, compounds that flow from the axon to the neighboring dendrites. Two of these compounds known to be involved in memory are serotonin and acetylcholine. Both are formed from specific essential nutrients that your body can’t make. You must obtain them from your diet. Learning is stored as memory mainly through modification of synapes. The particular pattern of synaptic discharges, called up by learning new information, sensitizes the neurons involved to trigger that pattern more easily on subsequent occasions. When the pattern recurs, memory of what was learned recurs also.

A new important discovery is that the amount of neurotransmitter present at the synapse, determines whether or not memory storage takes place. If the amount of neurotransmitter is reduced, memory storage is disrupted. We look at serotonin first. The results of animal experiments at the Center for Neurobiology at the Columbia University show that memory storage can be increased by introducing additional serotonin into the neuron. The same is true for humans, additional serotonin improve memory storage.

You can improve your memory if you sleep immediately after studying. Sleeping cuts off all further input and thus prevents interfering material from blocking storage of the learning. Now we know that the neurotransmitters are more important. Serotonin is released in large quantities into the brain as you fall asleep. It is the additional serotonin that improves memory storage. The drug zimelidine also increase brain serotonin and improves memory. Serotonin is formed in brain neurons from the essential animo acid l-tryptophan. The rate of serotonin formation depends on the amount of l-tryptophan that is available to the brain from the blood.

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