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B Vitamins For A Better Mind!

What are B Vitamins?

B vitamins refer to a class of water-soluble vitamins that are vital for maintaining good health and well being. 

They are building blocks for a healthy body that have a direct impact on your energy levels, cell metabolism and also brain health.

B Vitamins Include:

  • B1 (Thiamine): Helps your body generate energy from carbohydrates. The main role of carbohydrates is to provide energy for your body, especially your brain and nervous system.
  • B2 (Riboflavin): Helps your body breakdown carbohydrates, protein and fats to produce energy.
  • B3 (Niacin): A B vitamin made and used by your body to turn food into energy. It helps keep your nervous system, digestive system and your skin healthy.
  • B5 (Pantothenic Acid): Very important for making blood cells and helps convert your food into energy. 
  • B6 (Pyridone): Helps your body make energy from food and form red blood cells that help deliver oxygen throughout your body. B6 also regulates the hormones dopamine and serotonin.
  • B7 (Biotin): Your body needs Biotin to convert certain nutrients into energy. It’s also important for your hair, skin and nails.
  • B9 (Folate): Helps form your DNA, which is important for every cell (Including Brain Cells) in your body.
  • B12 (Cobalamin): Helps your body make energy from food just like B6. It keeps your body’s nerve and red blood cells healthy, and helps make DNA for all cells.

B vitamins play a vital role in producing brain chemicals that affect your mood and other brain functions. 

Low levels of B vitamins such as Folate, B12 and B6 have been linked to mental health problems such as anxiety and depression, along with worsening the symptoms of mental disorders such as bipolar disorder.

Where Do You Get B Vitamins?

B Vitamins are obtained by eating nutrient-rich foods. 

These Include:

  • Avocados: Long before avocados were considered a stereotypical millennial stable they’ve been regarded as a superfood. One whole avocado is packed with B vitamins.
  • Plain Low Fat Yogurt: The amount of nutritional value varies from brand to brand, but they tend to be rich in vitamin B12 and riboflavin.
  • Salmon: This is a low mercury fish that’s high in omega 3’s. It’s also high in other nutrients including B vitamins.
  • Chicken: Chicken, along with turkey are loaded with B vitamins such as niacin and pyridoxine.
  • Eggs: One chicken egg contains 33% of the recommended daily intake of the B vitamin biotin.
  • Chickpeas: Foods such as chickpeas are a great source of B vitamins, especially B6 and folate.
  • Tofu: Along with being a valuable plant source of iron and calcium, tofu contains vitamin B1.
  • Dark Green Vegetables: Vegetables such as spinach, romaine lettuce and kale contain large amounts of folate.

However, there are people with bodies that have a hard time absorbing B vitamins or they can’t obtain B vitamins from diet alone.

There are many vegetables that could lose of their nutritional content while being cooked. Unless you eat them raw.

Some people have cut meat out of their diets which is a significant source of vitamin B12.

It’s recommended that they look into taking a multivitamin or a vitamin B complex supplement.

What Is Vitamin B Complex?

Vitamin B-Complex is a supplement that includes all eight B vitamins in one pill.

It’s been shown to improve brain health by providing optimal psychological and neurological benefits. This significantly benefits mood along with reducing stress.

Despite the added benefits of a vitamin B supplement there are health risks as the dosage goes up, so talk to your doctor first before taking it.

Bipolar Disorder And B Vitamins

Bipolar Disorder is associated with episodes of mood swings that range from depressive low moods to manic/hypomanic highs.

Symptoms include mood swings, depression, anxiety, fatigue, irritability, inability to focus and appetite fluctuations.

The exact cause is unknown but a combination of genetics, environment and altered brain structure and chemistry play a role. An often overlooked factor that plays a role is poor diet.

A poor diet deficient in nutritional content can play a role in bipolar disorder, especially low B vitamins.

Studies have shown that vitamins B1, B6 and B12, in particular play a role in decreasing bipolar symptoms. Also they improve the overall health of your brain, which leads to better management of bipolar disorder.

Please talk to your doctor before increasing the amount of B vitamins in your diet.

Do you take any supplements to improve your health?

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Sources:

https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/vitamin-b-complex

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/expert-answers/vitamin-b12-and-depression/faq-20058077

https://www.eatthis.com/best-foods-vitamin-b/

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB12-Consumer/#:~:text=Vitamin%20B12%20is%20a%20nutrient,absorb%20vitamin%20B12%20from%20food.

https://www.livescience.com/51966-vitamin-b2-riboflavin.html#:~:text=Riboflavin%20is%20a%20vitamin%20that,be%20used%20by%20the%20body.

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/vitamin-b-foods#TOC_TITLE_HDR_5

https://www.webmd.com/diet/health-benefits-b-complex#1

https://psychcentral.com/lib/vitamins-for-bipolar-disorder/

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How To Improve Brain Fog?

What is Brain Fog?

The term “brain fog” is not a medical condition. It is used to describe symptoms that can affect your ability to think. 

When you’re feeling anxious, confused, disorganized, finding it hard to focus. Also, if you’re having a hard time putting your thoughts into words it can be described as brain fog.

What Causes Brain Fog?

Causes Include:

  • Low Iron Levels: Low Iron or Anemia occurs when the number of healthy red blood cells in your body is reduced. This can lead to low energy along with brain fog.
  • Mental Health Issues: Brain fog can be caused by mental health issues. These include conditions such as bipolar disorder, ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), major depression and different anxiety disorders. 
  • Overuse Of Electronics: Brain fog happens when you spend too much time on your smart phone or tablet.
  • Certain Medications: There are many medications that cause brain fog, including those taken for chemotherapy, anti-anxiety (effexor) and sleep. Talk to your doctor if you suspect your medication is making you feel foggy.
  • Poor Diet: A nutritionally inadequate diet can not only affect your physical health, but also brain fog. A poor diet consisting of foods that have high fructose corn syrup can make you feel foggy, due to spikes in blood sugar.
  • Lack Of Exercise: It’s interesting to note that when our bodies are inactive for too long our brains become inactive as well.
  • Lack Of Sleep: Sleep deprivation can disrupt your brain cell’s ability to communicate with each other. This leads to lapses in memory and visual perception.
  • Sleep Apnea: Sleep apnea occurs when an obstruction in your airway causes your breathing to frequently stop and start while you sleep. Over time it not only causes brain fog, it also causes brain damage from lack of oxygen.
  • Diabetes: Sugar is your brain’s main source of energy. If you have diabetes your blood sugar is out of whack and this causes brain fog.

If you’re interesting in learning about high fructose corn syrup please click on the button below:

What Are The Consequences Of Brain Fog?

Consequences of Brain Fog Include:

  • Poor Memory: Memory issues caused by brain fog may be short or long term. 
  • Trouble Concentrating: When you can’t concentrate because of brain fog, you may feel impulsive, have intrusive thoughts, overreact or be inattentive.
  • Difficulty Carrying Out Tasks: Having brain fog causes you to have difficulties with starting and finishing tasks. These can include tasks that need to be complete within a specific timeframe.
  • Unable To Communicate Effectively: It’s interesting to note that not being able to think clearly can cause you to not only stumble over your words, but also affect how you build rapport with other people.
  • Worsening Mental Health: Chronic stress and anxiety can lead to an increased risk of brain damage, which can cause dementia, chronic depression and worsening anxiety.  

How To Improve Brain Fog?

It’s important to identify what’s causing your brain fog.

Once the cause is identified, the next step is to take action to improve it.

Here Are Some Tips To Improve Brain Fog:

  • Get More Sleep: When you improve the quality of sleep you’ll notice that your mind is clearer. For example if you have sleep apnea, it’s important to use a CPAP machine to not only assure that you get good sleep, but also increase oxygen to the brain.
  • Eat Healthier Foods: When you’re fighting brain fog it’s important to put food into consideration. For example foods such as dark green vegetables, avocados, olive oil and omega-3 rich foods like salmon are recommended for brain health. Also, along with dark green vegetables such as spinach it’s important to consider raisins, cashews, beans and red meats as sources of iron.
  • Exercise: When you get moving and exercise it promotes the growth of neural connections in the brain.
  • Spend Time In Nature: Exercise is a great way to promote brain health. However you’ll have the added benefit of increased oxygen from nature when you exercise outside.
  • Take Supplements: If you’re not able to get omega 3s from salmon, then you might want to consider a supplement.
  • Make Time For Self-Care: It’s important to take a time out once in a while for self-care. For example you can spend this time pursuing a hobby such as gardening which not only relaxes you, but allows you to produce your own dark green leafy vegetables.
  • Reduce Stress: Taking time out to focus on stress relief helps a lot. It helps to focus on the present moment by meditating and breathing deep.
  • Reduce Smart Phone Usage: The blue light emitted from your smart can keep you up at night. It’s important to shut it off a least an hour before bed.

How Do You Handle Brain Fog?

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Sources:

https://www.webmd.com/brain/ss/slideshow-brain-fog#:~:text=%E2%80%9CBrain%20fog%E2%80%9D%20isn’t,put%20your%20thoughts%20into%20words.

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320111

https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/can-screen-time-cause-health-issues

https://health.usnews.com/health-care/patient-advice/articles/brain-fog-potential-causes-and-treatment

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/sleep-apnea

https://www.healthline.com/health/diabetes/brain-fog-diabetes

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/01/160121121818.htm

https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/brain-food-for-fatigue#3.-Avocados