5 ingredients for better brain health

Our friends at newhope care about your brain. They care about your brain so much that while attending the Nutrition Business Journal Summit, newhope360 spoke with Dr. Daniel G. Amen, M.D., a clinical neuroscientist, psychiatrist and brain imaging expert about ways to improve brain functioning. According to Dr. Amen, “Your brain is the organ of judgment, character, personality and every decision you make.”
We couldn’t agree more with newhope and Dr. Amen on the importance of a healthy brain and therefore wanted to share their wonderful knowledge on how you can help keep your brain healthy and happy.
whole_foodEat the rainbow
ROYGBIV is the acronym from grade school to remind us of the colors of the rainbow. Taken to inform brain-healthy dietary choices, we have:
Red: Strawberries, raspberries, cherries, red bell peppers, tomatoes, pomegranates
Orange: Oranges, yams, carrots
Yellow: Squash, yellow bell peppers, peaches, bananas
Green: Spinach, broccoli, peas
Blue: Blueberries, a.k.a. “brain berries”
Purple: Plums
turmeric_spice_colorBe smart, eat tasty
Turmeric is to curcumin what the apple tree is to the apple, said Terry Lemerond, president of EuroPharma. Curcumin contains a chemical that has been shown to decrease the plaques in the brian thought to be responsible for Alzheimer’s disease, said Dr. Amen. Curcumin is also one of the better natural anti-inflammatories.
brooklyn_salsa_foundersIt’s not what you know, it’s who you know
“The No. 1 predictor of longevity is conscientiousness—if you show up when you say you’ll show up you’ll live longer. The ‘don’t worry be happy’ people die earliest from accidents and preventable illnesses. A little anxiety is okay,” said Dr. Amen. “Who you hang out with really matters. The best thing is to find the healthiest person you can stand and spend as much time as you can with him.”
coffeeCoffee in moderation only
“Caffeine is not good for your brain—it dehydrates you and messes with your sleep,” said Dr. Amen. “You can do better.” Amen said that one or two normal-size cups of coffee or two-three cups of tea a day is probably not a problem. Caffeine restricts blood flow to the brain and anything like that leads to premature aging.
anchoviesNothing fishy about brain health
Because the long-chain omega-3 fatty acid DHA is the main component of the brain’s synapses, diets rich in omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to promote a healthy emotional balance.
Low levels of omega-3s have been assiciated with everything from anxiety to depression and suicide. The biggest fish-eating country, Japan, has the lowest levels of depression, while fish-averse Americans suffer from high levels of depression.
Grilled herbed chicken breastsGABA, the king neurotransmitter
Eating protein-rich foods such as chicken, fish and beef provides the amino acid glutamine, which serves as the precursor to the neurotransmitter GABA, or gamma-aminobutyric acid.
GABA, explains Dr. Amen, is reported in the herbal literature to work in much the same way as anti-anxiety drugs by stabilizing nerve cells and decreasing their tendency to fire erratically.
market20potentialMarket potential for cognitive products
Compared with other supplement categories, such as heart health and joint health, brain supplement sales are underdeveloped despite significant concern and demand from consumers. In this graph’s brain health column, the gap between the line (category sales, in millions) and the bar (how concerned consumers are with the condition) spells market potential.

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Tom Foerstel : Founder & President

Tom Foerstel

Founder & President

Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area in the 60’s, Tom developed a strong desire to create positive change for people and planet.

He went on to pursue his passion for art and design at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, and worked for design firms in Southern California before moving to Boise, Idaho in the early 80’s. Foerstel Design opened its doors in 1985. Since its inception, the firm has cultivated a bold, happy, forward-looking team focussed on creating distinct and effective work on behalf of their clients.

An integral part of Tom’s philosophy is giving back to the community in which he lives — a company cornerstone that drives Foerstel’s long history of providing pro-bono services to local non-profit humanitarian and arts programs.

One of Tom’s proudest personal achievements is his ability to say Supercalifragilisticexpyalidocious backwards.