6 Ways to Improve Brain Health Naturally

September 25, 2023

Maintaining optimal brain function is crucial for a healthy life. Your brain is the control center of your body, responsible for everything from memory to thought, emotion, motor skills, vision, breathing, and more.

Are you worried about brain fog, mental decline, dementia or the onset of Alzheimer’s? The good news is that there are lifestyle choices and natural solutions that can have a profound impact on your brain’s vitality and performance. Today we are going to share with you 6 ways to improve brain health naturally.

As you may know, September is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month. The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that one in seven Americans aged 60 and older have mild cognitive impairment (an early stage of memory problems) and one in three over age 80 have Alzheimer’s disease. By 2050, 13 million Americans will be living with dementia.

The current approach to prevention and treatment is not working. There is no cure for Alzheimer’s and none on the horizon. Drugs and psychotherapy help some patients with mental illnesses, but permanent resolution is elusive. So that leaves us with prevention. Of course, there are multiple contributors to these disorders. Genetic influences, societal problems, environmental toxins and family dynamics all play a role, but brain health is front and center.

You may not be able to tackle all these factors, but you can adopt strategies to enhance brain health and, in the process, promote optimal cognitive function, memory and mood, not just today but throughout your life.

6 Ways to Improve Brain Health Naturally

1) Balance Your Hormones

One of the first things to consider if you are struggling with memory or mood problems is hormone imbalances. Hormones are chemical messengers that regulate many critical physiological functions. Hormone levels naturally fluctuate during various stages of life, and those changes can have a significant impact on your emotions, cognition and memory.

  • Thyroid hormones are particularly important because they govern metabolism, and your brain requires a lot of energy. Hypothyroidism, or low thyroid function, is a frequent and often undiagnosed cause of depression, anxiety and brain fog. Studies also suggest that untreated hypothyroidism doubles the risk of developing Alzheimer’s-type dementia.
  • Testosterone levels slowly decline over the course of a man’s life. Low testosterone levels, which are common in older men, are associated with reductions in motivation, self-esteem, sex drive, mood and cognitive function.
  • Estrogen and progesterone enhance brain function and protect against memory loss and dementia. Changes in these hormones during pregnancy, postpartum and menopause can cause irritability, depression and concentration difficulties. A decline in the neuroprotective effects of these hormones is especially noticeable after menopause.

You can see why we place so much emphasis on testing and balancing hormones. Restoring levels with bioidentical hormones can make a world of difference in your mental and physical energy and vitality, how you think and feel and your risk of future problems. In short, it is one of the most powerful and important therapies for better brain health.

2) Adopt a Healthy Eating Program

A healthy eating program is as essential for brain function as it is for weight and blood sugar control. Research reveals that people who eat nutritious foods think more clearly and are less likely to be depressed or develop dementia. In one study, 30% of participants enrolled in a healthy eating program had complete remission of their depression.

Unfortunately, the bulk of the calories eaten by Americans come from “ultra-processed” foods like cereal, chips, packaged desserts and snacks, fast food, frozen pizza and white bread. Ultra-processed foods were shown in two recent studies to speed age-related cognitive decline and raise the risk of dementia.

Most ultra-processed foods are high in sugar, starches and/or refined carbohydrates. High-carbohydrate foods are rapidly converted into glucose and absorbed into the bloodstream. This provides a quick, energizing “sugar high,” but it is followed by a dip in blood sugar that makes you irritable, moody and craving another sugar fix. A high intake of sugars has been correlated with higher rates of depression and a significantly increased risk of Alzheimer’s. Do not assume that artificial sweeteners are better. They, too, are bad for the brain.

So, what should you eat?

A healthy eating program is based on whole, unprocessed foods with lots of non-starchy vegetables, high-quality protein, plenty of fats and oils and a little fruit. Foods with proven brain benefits include salmon and other omega-3-rich fish, olive oil, avocados, blueberries, leafy greens, nuts, tea and coffee.

The Mediterranean and modified ketogenic eating plans are good models to follow, but we  are partial to the Dr. Hotze’s Optimal Eating Program. This program has helped thousands of our guests (we call our patients guests) achieve their health goals.

3) Support Gut Health and Tackle Food Allergies

Have you ever had a strong “gut feeling” or butterflies in your stomach? These are concrete examples of the “gut-brain axis,” the two-way communication pathways that link the emotional and cognitive areas of the brain with the gut.

There is increasing evidence that the gut microbiome, the vast collection of bacteria, yeast and other microbes in the intestinal tract, plays a significant role in brain health. In addition to facilitating communication with the brain, a diverse, well-balanced microbiome curbs inflammation and produces short-chain fatty acids that can be used as brain fuel.

Low-fiber, high-sugar foods, stress, antibiotics and other toxins disrupt the gut microbiome. All too often, this results in the overgrowth of yeast, which can lead to “leaky gut syndrome.” Leaky gut allows partially digested food, bacteria and toxins to cross the intestinal barrier, enter the bloodstream and wreak havoc in the body. This is a dominant cause of food allergies, which are another overlooked cause of brain fog and mood swings.

We have had great success eradicating yeast overgrowth, treating food allergies and restoring gut function with our Dr. Hotze’s Optimal Eating Program. Our guests report improvements in everything from memory and concentration to depression and anxiety. Supplemental probiotics, which reintroduce beneficial bacteria, are also recommended.

4) Make Physical Activity a Priority

Crosswords, Wordle, Sudoku, puzzles and other activities that challenge your brain help hone cognitive skills, memory and processing speed. But if you really want to give your brain a boost, you need to get physically active.

Thousands of studies have demonstrated the benefits of exercise for memory and mood. Some of these benefits can be attributed to improvements in blood flow, cardiovascular fitness, blood sugar, weight, etc., which are closely associated with brain health. But exercise also has more direct effects.

Physical activity triggers the release of mood-boosting endorphins, making it ideal for reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety. It increases levels of BDNF, a growth factor that protects neurons and promotes neuroplasticity, which is essential for memory and learning. Perhaps the best news is that regular exercise also reduces the likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s disease and mental health problems. So, enjoy word games and puzzles but also get active!

5) Solve Your Sleep Problems

You know a lousy night’s sleep can leave you feeling irritable, unfocused and forgetful the next day, but did you know that persistently poor sleep has serious long-term consequences for brain health?

While you sleep, your brain strengthens connections between neurons and consolidates memories. It also performs housekeeping chores such as flushing out toxins that have accumulated during the day. Interruptions in various stages of sleep have been linked with increases in beta-amyloid, a toxic protein that builds up in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

Harvard researchers conducted a study involving more than 2,800 men and women aged 65 and older to evaluate the links between sleep and risk of dementia. They found that the individuals who routinely slept fewer than five hours a night were twice as likely to develop dementia, compared to those who slept six to eight hours. Good sleepers also lived longer.

One in three Americans fail to get at least six hours a night. For peak brain function you must make rejuvenating sleep a priority. Many of our guests swear by Physicians Preference Vitamins Sleep Formula, a unique supplement that contains melatonin along with herbs and other natural compounds that help you relax and turn off ruminating thoughts that can keep you awake at night.

6) Take Supplements for a Better Brain

I also recommend a basic nutritional supplement program. Although a healthy eating program provides an abundance of vitamins and minerals, it is still possible to have deficiencies in critical nutrients.

For example, the absorption of vitamin B12, a standout in brain health, declines with age. Deficiencies, which can cause depression and memory loss, are fairly common in older people, even if they eat plenty of B12-rich foods. Vitamin D also supports mood and cognitive function and slows age-related decline, but the majority of people of all ages have insufficient vitamin D blood levels.

An easy way to ensure adequate levels of B-vitamins, antioxidants, and other vitamins and minerals is to take a good multivitamin, such as Physicians Preference Vitamins Energy Formula. A 2022 study found that older men and women who took daily multivitamin-mineral supplementation for three years had improvements in overall cognition, memory and executive functions such as focus and planning.

Omega-3 fatty acids, especially DHA, as in Physicians Preference Vitamins Omega Complete Fish Oil, should also be part of your basic supplement program. DHA is a key component of neural membrane and the myelin sheaths that insulate nerves, but few people get enough of it from food sources. Additional supplements with proven benefits for the brain include neurotransmitter precursors (choline, SAM-e, 5-HTP), natural anti-inflammatories (curcumin, quercetin, resveratrol) and brain energizers (coenzyme Q10, N-acetyl cysteine, alpha lipoic acid).

Brain Health = Whole Body Health

What you are going to love about these natural ways to help achieve optimal brain health is that in addition to enhancing mental clarity, emotional stability and outlook on life, it will improve other aspects of your health. Good nutrition, exercise, hormone balancing, sleep and gut health are essential for whole-body health. Embracing these suggestions will also help you lose weight, control your blood sugar and blood pressure, boost your immune function and more.

By addressing the root causes of symptoms with therapies that enhance overall health, you can give yourself peace of mind that you are doing what you can to help prevent health problems now and in the future.

CONTACT US TODAY!

We have a new Brain Program to help you with issues such as brain fog, ADHD (adults, too!), lack of mental focus and more. Contact our Wellness Consultants at 281-698-8698 for a complimentary consultation. It will be our privilege to serve you!

 

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AboutHotze Health & Wellness Center

Since 1989, Hotze Health & Wellness Center has helped over 33,000 patients get their lives back using bioidentical hormones that restore hormones to optimal levels, strengthen immune systems, and increase energy levels. Our treatment regimen addresses the root cause of hypothyroidism, adrenal fatigue, menopause, perimenopause, low testosterone, allergies, and candida.

Led by best-selling author, radio host and leading natural health expert, Steven F. Hotze, M.D., our medical team has over 100 years’ combined medical experience backed by a staff of nearly 100 caring professionals who provide an environment of hope and extraordinary hospitality for each of our patients, who we call our guests. It is our deepest desire to help you obtain and maintain health and wellness naturally so that you may enjoy a better quality of life, pure and simple.

 

What I BelieveBY DR. STEVEN HOTZE

Do you want to live a healthy, happy, purpose-driven life? Do you want to restore your health so that your loss of energy, weight gain, joint pain, depression and lack of drive or motivation won’t hold you back from achieving your personal and professional goals?

Dr. Steven Hotze wants that for you, too. In fact, in his powerful and passionate video entitled, “What I Believe”, Dr. Hotze shares how his Christian worldview and pivotal experiences have ignited a deep desire to offer the message of hope and optimal health to all who need to hear it.


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Ron Guidry
2023-03-08
Doctors are not the final authority in our journey of achieving/maintaining health and wellness but having a good team of doctors in your support and guidance community is not only helpful it is wise and also essential. The team and staff at Hotze Health and Wellness are health professionals that you can trust to help you navigate all the misinformation that may be keeping you separated from your optimal level of health.
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2023-01-12
I’ve been a guest at this facility for 15 years. They are the most efficient, thorough and caring group of individuals I’ve ever experienced. Dr Hotze looks to change the way a typical doctor treats patients and looks for root causes to eliminate medical issues instead of treating “symptoms”. My life has improved 100% since my initial visit. The cost of the treatments are worth it.
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2022-12-21
I cannot accurately describe in words how I feel about this practice and the entire staff. I have had quite a few health issues throughout the years, rheumatoid arthritis, sjogrens, weight gain, hair loss, irritability, and that is just the beginning. I had pretty much given up on feeling good, just decided to "live with it" and hope for the best. Two very close friends love the Hotze Wellness Clinic and they have experienced life changing health. Made my appointment and from the beginning I felt heard. Not a in and out fast food style practice. They are looked and are looking at my entire body for overall health and wellness. Connections from mind and body to clinical blood work, even dental questions....they care and I feel as if I can trust them. I am on a path to complete wellness and my goal is to have my RA back in remission as it once was....make yourself a priority. Having hope is an incredible feeling!