Keys to Protecting The Aging Brain

Written By: William J. Cromie - Harvard News Office

Brain aging found to start at 40

Genes can begin to fail early

Brain aging found to start at 40Bruce Yankner, a professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School, is investigating how human brains change between ages 26 and 106. If you are more than 40 years old, the news may not be good.

He and his colleagues at Children’s Hospital in Boston and Harvard searched brain tissue from 30 people for changes in genes involved in learning and memory, and for damage to these genes caused by the normal stresses of living. From ages 26 to 40 years, their brains show similar patterns of wear and tear and low levels of gene damage. Brains 73 years and older exhibited more damage, as expected.

A big surprise, however, came in the middle ages. Some people between 40 and 70 had gene patterns more like younger people, and some like older people. “In other words, people in their middle-age years show variable rates of brain aging,” says Yankner, who is 50.

These results suggest that deleterious changes can occur much earlier than expected. But that’s not necessarily true for everyone. The data also indicate that our brains contain protective and repair mechanisms that can compensate for gene damage. “Thus, our findings raise the exciting possibility that drugs or lifestyle changes in young adults could delay cognitive declines and protect against the onset of brain diseases in later years,” Yankner concludes.


Full article at Harvard University Gazette


Aging Brain – Protecting Telomeres – By David Burns

If you drive, engage, stimulate pools of neurons, systems, networks to an adequate level you get protein replication in the neurons. The consequence of which is a lower, more appropriate membrane potential, structural integrity of cell and more efficient energy production. This is a healthier, more durable state for a neuron. A healthy system does not exceed its metabolic capacity as easily and therefore does not generate as many free radicals (i.e. ROS).

Neurons generate free radicals just via their own energy production, but if a demand to a given system exceeds its’ metabolic capacity anaerobic energy systems will come into play. The consequence of this is greater ROS. Elevated ROS is not ideal for the health of a cell.

Most of us have heard that simple exercises like walking are beneficial to brain. It is likely assumed that this is as a consequence to improved cardiovascular function only, however I doubt it. The greatest input to brain is via our muscle and joints.

Great, so we do things do exercise our brains, “brain train”, if you will, which is what we do at Brain Centers NW. But given the all to common inefficient neuronal system and our toxic environment, this is not enough to deal with the damage sustained by ROS.

Now, as the above article points out, lifestyle changes may effect the rate of the aging neuron. The article references vitamin E as an example. There are many other anti-oxidants that benefit brain through their free radical scavenging efforts.

So what lifestyle changes should be made to help our brains? Some will say “just eat a lot of fruits and vegetables”. This is likely beneficial but given the depleting quality of our food chain, I question whether it is enough. Moreover, how many of us follow through with the “perfect” diet.

Because of our fast paced lifestyle, the ever diminishing quality of our food source and the scary realization that “organic” may not be so organic, I’ve been looking for the “perfect food” for some time. Like most of you, I’ve tried many different supplements trying to find the best source of vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, amino acids, essential fatty acids.

As it turns out many supplements are synthetic, have fillers, don’t have in them what they claim and are “enzymaticly dead”. Not only do the supplements themselves have their issues but the idea of my kids joining a pill popping culture was less than ideal in my mind.

I have recently come across what has been called perhaps the “perfect food”. Somebody introduced me to this “perfect food” via this site This perfect food is Moringa and it is apparently saving lives around the world. As I have dug deeper, it is is becoming clearer to me that Moringa may be the “perfect food”, in that it is providing most if not all what the brain and body needs and it is food, pure nutrition, rather than a synthesized product.

My hopes are that through exercise and ideal nutrition I can help those with injured brains recover, slow the aging process down and help protect the young brains of the world. Think of Brain Centers NW’s approach as the jab, cross to knock out or at least slow the aging process, improve function and optimize brain output.

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