What is a broken brain you might wonder, and do I have one? If you are suffering from irritability, mood swings, or forget where you place your keys, or someone's name, or even something more serious like depression, anxiety, bipolar, ADD or ADHD, dementia, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's or autism to name a few, then you have a broken brain.
Often though the cause of these symptoms may actually be in the body. The gut and brain are in close communication with one another, and the immune system. The microbiome (all the bacteria) in the gut is responsible for producing about 90% of the neurotransmitters found in the brain. Those feel good ones, like serotonin and dopamine, as well as even acetylcholine (where a lack of this may cause us to forget words for instance) and GABA (where a lack of this would cause anxiety). This microbiome may become damaged through the use of medications and antibiotics, the foods we eat (animal protein with antibiotics) and the water we drink (chlorinated). The gut lining may also become more permeable allowing undigested food particles and other toxins to filter through. Gluten has been shown to do this, in everyone! The immune system does not recognize these foreign particles and initiates an attack, an inflammatory response, which releases cytokines which tell the brain that there is an attack, and so the glial cells in the brain also initiate an inflammatory response. We end up then with an inflamed system, and an inflamed brain, which then leads to the symptoms like brain fog, poor focus and concentration, memory loss, mood disorders and the like.
Other things that contribute to or cause this are our poor diets, high in sugars, processed foods, damaged vegetable oils and fats, colorants, additives, preservatives, GMO's, toxins (from pesticides, arsenic in the water, plastics) and heavy metals (mercury in fish and fillings, aluminium in foil and vaccines) as well as nutrient deficiencies. Chronic stress, sedentary lifestyles and lack of sleep also cause inflammation, anxiety, and even damages the hippocampus causing memory loss.
Where in the past it was thought that we were born with a certain number of brain cells and that the brain never made new ones. Once cells were damaged, or if you had a learning difficulty or developed dementia, there wasn't a lot you could do about it and it would just get worse over time. We know now however that this is untrue and that the brain is neuroplastic, that it can rewire itself and even grow new brain cells ! Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to rewire the brain and promote neuroplasticity. Eating a brain healthy diet rich in good fats (coconut oil, avocados, omega 3's), phytonutrients (colourful vegetables), especially broccoli, have been shown to promote neuroplacticity and reduce inflammation too.
In my next blog I will list 7 basic steps you can do to help you to heal your broken brain and achieve an ultramind.
Dr Nicole Bernic