For some scientists, the brain is the organ that governs every facet of human consciousness, including how we talk, feel, learn, create, move, relate, behave, and comprehend and respond to the world around us.
And for Dr Daniel Amen who is a nationally recognised neuroscientist expert on the relationship between the brain and behaviour, “Your brain is the hardware of your soul. You cannot be who you really want to be unless your brain is working right.” A thought provoking quote from his New York Times best seller, Change your brain change your life.
Dr Amen argues what is most important in developing a healthy mind, is living a healthy lifestyle.
One can adapt their life to reverse or prevent a problem before it happens and before significant medical help is needed. Dr Amen advocates a true “health care” philosophy rather than our culture’s traditional “sick care” philosophy. A healthy brain must be kept up through proactive approaches, not reactive approaches.
How can you “optimize” your brain to achieve your fullest potential ?
Dr Amen explains which brain systems are associated with particular problems, and offers specific yet simple “brain prescriptions” (cognitive exercises, nutrition medication, and more) to enhance brain function and heal each problem. He focuses on five areas the brain that when are not working properly can cause many of the difficulties associated with anxiety, depression, excessive worrying, anger, and distraction.
THESE 5 AREAS ARE :
- The deep limbic system of the brain is involved in bonding and mood control. When this part of the brain isn’t working correctly people may struggle with moodiness and negativity. When activity in this area is decreased, depression and decreased motivation can occur. Amen explains simple steps to help activate this brain area including thought exercises, physical exercise, and a diet high in omega3-fatty acids, low- saturated fat, and high carbohydrates.
- The basal ganglia are large structures in the brain involved with movement and emotions that when overactive can lead to anxiety, panic, fear, and conflict avoidance tendencies. When this area is overactive, disorders such as ADD, panic attacks, and anxiety can occur. Dr Amen proposes mental exercises, meditation, imagery, and a diet without alcohol, lots of kava extract, valerian root, and B vitamins.
- The prefrontal cortex is the supervisor of the brain responsible for keeping you focused, make planes, impulse control, and decision making. When this part of the brain is underactive people will have problems with attention, focus, and organization. Such disorders that can occur are ADD, schizophrenia, and drug addictions. Ways to improve the prefrontal cortex’s function, is creating goals in one’s life, having a high protein diet low carbohydrate low fat, as well as seeking profession help and prescription medication at the same time.
- The cingulated system is a part of the brain called the “gear shifter”, allowing you to shift attention from one thought to another and between behaviors. When this part is too much active, people get stuck in thought loops or behaviors. Disorders in this area are addictions, obsessive compulsive disorders, eating disorders, rage, and chronic pain. Dr Amen proposes a number of mental exercises to correct thoughts and behaviors, prescription medications, and exercise.
- The temporal lobes are involved in memory, language, facial recognition, and temper control. When problems arise in these areas people are more prone to rapid mood shifts, and learning problems. Disorders from this area can include memory problems (amnesia), emotional stability (fear and anxiety), and sensory processing (hallucinations). “Prescriptions” to help correct the temporal lopes include involving one’s self in music, prescription medication recommendations, adequate sleep, elimination of caffeine and nicotine, and a diet balanced in protein and carbohydrates.
The philosophy of change your brain, change your life attempts to demonstrate we can change our self’s to have a better way of life. You don’t have to agree with this point of vue, but it was interesting to share it with you. Never forget to think out of the box !!!
THE JOKES CORNER
THE BOOKS CORNER
The book “Change your brain, change your life” offers simple techniques which will help you to: Quell anxiety and panic; fight depression; boost memory; conquer impulsiveness and learn to focus; and stop obsessive worrying.
In this completely revised and updated edition of the breakthrough bestseller that’s sold nearly a million copies worldwide, you’ll see scientific evidence that your anxiety, depression, anger, obsessiveness or impulsiveness could be related to how specific structures work in your brain. You’re not stuck with the brain you’re born with. Renowned Daniel Amen, neuropsychiatrist, includes the latest, surprising, effective ‘brain prescriptions’ that can help heal your brain and change your life.
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THE COUSELLORS CORNER
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