Brain Health: The Next Health Trend
Health trends come and go. These days, people are talking a lot less about heart disease, even though it’s still the nation’s number one cause of death and has been for decades. Only a few years ago, the health of the gut and the microbiome was coined the new medical frontier, as researchers started understanding how significant the microbiome is to wellbeing and prevention of chronic disease. So, what’s the next health trend?
Brain Health is the Next Emerging Trend in Health
While gut health trend is likely here to stay for a while, as it’s impact on wellbeing is substantial, brain health is emerging as the next big trend in health. Brain health is on a lot of people’s minds these days, and for a good reason. The rapidly rising rate of Alzheimer’s disease is staggering.
Deaths from Alzheimer’s disease are increasing exponentially, while deaths from heart disease are actually decreasing somewhat. The high mortality rate associated with Alzheimer’s is due in part to the aging baby boomer population as well as increased awareness and more practitioners reporting the disease as the cause of death. Still, those factors are only a partial explanation for why brain health is an emerging health trend.
Brain Health and Blood Sugar Metabolism
Medical professionals have long known of the strong association between dementia, early onset Alzheimer’s, and diabetes. Insulin resistance is a condition characterized by cells in the body resisting or ignoring the signal that the metabolic hormone insulin is trying to send out. Insulin triggers the cells to grab glucose out of the bloodstream and bring it into themselves. When the cells are insulin resistant, the glucose remains as elevated sugar in the blood.
Elevated blood sugar is at the heart of diabetes and may leave to brain cells deprived of the energy-producing glucose they need to function. This can cause damage which may begin as early as the teenage or young adult years. An ever-expanding supply of junk and processed foods filled with excess added salt, sugar, and poor quality fat continues to drive the rates of Type 2 diabetes skyward. Just as nutrition is fundamental to the prevention and management of heart disease, so too will it be for supporting brain health and slowing the cognitive decline that comes with aging.
Hacking Brain Health for Peak Performance
Beyond lifestyle changes to slow brain degeneration and cognitive decline is another contingent singularly focused on achieving optimal brain health. Biohackers intent on achieving peak brain performance have already maxed out the potential for a healthy lifestyle to improve mental function. Cutting edge biohackers are increasingly finding what they are seeking with nootropics.
In the beginning, meditative techniques such as yoga and mindful movement were touted everywhere as life-optimizing tools that could help you cope with stress. Nootropics are a natural progression of brain wellness hacks. The brain tells the body what to do—it runs the show. Enter nootropics, which are “smart drug” dietary supplements intended to enhance mental function. Their effectiveness has been confirmed through a growing body of research. Nootropics are many and varied, and you would be well-advised to have a qualified wellness professional help you with implementing them.
For more information, contact a wellness professional in your local area.