The Best Supplement For Brain Health? Find Out What We Have Discovered.

by / Saturday, 23 April 2011 / Published in Featured, Health, Herbs and Supplements

 

The internet is overflowing with companies and supplements that all profess to having the best supplement for brain health. The lists are a mile long and if you buy them all, you are sure to go broke. So I have done a little research to clear up some discrepancies and focus on some crucial elements when it comes to taking care of an often neglected part of our body.

What are two of the most renowned brain supplements, along with newest herbs that have shown promising test results? What are some other brain boosting supplements? How can you get started with a brain friendly diet and what is the most effective supplementation? Lets get started.

Lets Start With The Most Crucial: Choline

Choline is one of the most crucial nutrients your body requires for brain health. It is a key nutrient your body requires to produce acetylcholine. It has been found that acetylcholine benefits the brain in terms of memory and mood, along with proper brain function. Choline is found in many common foods that many of us eat everyday. Some of these foods with the most abundant choline content are:

  • Eggs
  • Peanut Butter
  • Beef
  • Almonds

It is also possible to supplement this nutrient if you are not eating enough choline rich foods. The catch is, there is some skepticism about supplemented choline crossing the blood-brain barrier.  This problem can be remedied by stacking the choline with other supplements that help with transportation of choline to the brain. One of the newest and most promising is known as Alpha GPC.

What is Alpha GPC and How Can It Help?

A choline compound that is already found in the brain, known as Alpha GPC, rapidly helps transport choline through the blood-brain barrier. It is one of the newer supplements that have hit the market that has shown some pretty phenominal health benefits for the body as a whole, but because this article is about brain health, we will save the other benefits for another day.

There is quite a bit of detail that goes into explaining how this supplement performs, so in a nut shell, this supplement is a “nerve stimulator.” When alpha GPC is combined with B vitamins and choline, you have an enhanced transport system for choline to the brain.

Another Must Have Brain Booster: Omega 3 Fatty Acids

  • (ALA) Alpha-linolenic acid
  • (DHA) Docosahexaenoic acid
  • (EPA) Eicosapentaenoic acid

Just like choline we are able to get our omega 3’s from common foods that we eat. An abundance of Omega 3’s can be found in:

  • Fish (especially salmon and sardines)
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Cheese

Omega 3’s are fantastic for supplementation, especially DHA. There is a huge concentration of DHA in the gray matter of the brain. I’ll take this as a tip to make sure you get enough intake of DHA. This is a supplement that I have to recommend you researching more about, because it has major benefits to our entire body, especially our heart.

Other Brain Boosting Supplements

  • Bacopa Monnieri: This is an amazing plant that has been shown to have a number of health benefits, ranging from neurotropic and antioxidant properties all the way to anti-anxiety benefits.
  • Coenzyme Q-10: Also found in the human body already, coenzyme Q-10 supplementation has had many beneficial studies conducted showing that it may help with headaches, blood pressure, and is currently being investigated for potential cancer treatment.
  • DMAE: Relates to choline and is found naturally in fish like sardines. It is known that DMAE is processed by the liver into choline. Vigilance and alertness are reported benefits in short term studies.
  • Ginkgo Biloba: Now, one of the top selling herbs in the United States. Ginkgo Biloba has been said to be beneficial for us in many ways. But most important there is promising evidence that has favored Ginkgo for memory enhancement.
  • Gotu Kola: Studies on Gotu Kola have suggested that it may reduce anxiety and mental clarity. One study done even showed to reduce a person’s startle response, meaning a decrease in anxiety. It is said that it boosts circulation to the brain.
  • Huperzine A: Chinese studies that have been done with Huperzine A have shown elderly people with Alzheimer’s disease who have taken Huperzine A saw their symptoms lesson. More studies are being done that are showing its neuro protective effects.
  • Phosphatidylserine: There have been over 60 clinical trials on phosphatidylserine that have been shown to benefit cognitive function. The most important conclusion that has been drawn from these studies has been that it rejuvenates brain cell membranes. This means potential increase in strength of memory, better concentration, and better overall cognitive function.
  • Rhodiola Rosea: Said to be effective in decreasing depression and improving mood. It has been used to improve mental and physical performance.
  • Vincpocetine: Helps with blood flow not only through the brain, but through the entire body. This means better transportation of oxygen in the blood and circulation throughout the body. So many studies have shown beneficial results of vinpocetine that even more are being done to see how else we can benefit from this supplement.

3 Ways To Better Your Brain Today

  1. Feed It: Become more conscious of the foods that you are putting in your body and make adjustments to your diet that are brain-nutrient friendly. Some common foods that were listed above were eggs, milk, fish, and almonds. Research some more to find out what other foods have these nutrients that you can add to your diet.
  2. Supplementation: Taking supplements along with a balanced diet is a sure way to make sure your getting everything you need. Choline and omega 3’s are huge! Look into  alpha GPC as well, to assist choline in breaking the blood-brain barrier.
  3. Exercise: Exercising the brain can be as simple as stimulating your brain with word puzzles and a good book. Challenge your mind and you will benefit.

The Most Effective Supplementation

The most effective supplement for brain health besides a good diet can be a supplement that acts as a vitamin for the brain. It needs to not only provide choline and omega 3’s, but other herbs and supplements that act uniformly to stimulate and feed the brain.

There are many combined brain and memory supplements on the market, but many are overpriced and lack ingredients that work in unison, to have your body fully utilize and absorb them. There are a select few that are worthy of the claims they make and that you can surely benefit from. Buying a brain supplement with many nutrients and herbs combined would be the equivalent to a multi-vitamin. These are great supplements if you know what to look for. We can consider these multi-vitamins for your brain.

Summary

There isn’t just “one” best supplement for brain health, there are many.

A healthy brain requires not only the right nutrition, but a combination of healthy practices. The two vital nutrients you should be feeding your brain are choline and omega 3’s. They are key players in making sure your brain is fueled and functions at optimum performance. You are able to supplement these nutrients if a diet is hard to follow, but look into getting some B vitamins and alpha GPC to help more of the choline supplement make it past the blood-brain barrier. Make sure to challenge your mind on a regular basis to keep it sharp and maybe even read some fantasy books to spark your imagination.

Multi-brain supplements combine nutrients and herbs that work together to benefit the mind and body as a whole. Supplements like these will save you tons of money and have all ingredients combined instead of buying a multiple bottles of supplements. Eat right, feed your brain, exercise it regularly and you will be on your way to a healthy mind.

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