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Monday, February 20, 2012

Can a Healthy Brain Make the Difference?

     This week's tip is a success tip. Many of you know I am a bit of a health nut and a success junkie and last week I came across a video that combined the two. I was so fascinated by this video I wanted to share some of its highlights.  The video is of Dr. Daniel Amen of the Amen clinics speaking about having a high performing brain and how it directly effects your success to give you a high performance life. I know it doesn't take a genius to figure that out but the information that he shared was eye opening, even for me. He shares a brain study that really changes the way we look at success and longevity.

     The fact is the "Don't Worry be Happy" people died the earliest. The number one factor on longevity was the quality of the decisions you made throughout your lifetime. Conscientious people live the longest. There are 7 steps to creating a high performance brain. Brains run the world yet we rarely think about the brain, a huge mistake because success always starts with a healthy brain. The good news is with a good brain plan you can slow and even reverse the aging process and improve everything in your life. Brain excellence is your competitive advantage in anything you do. Your brain controls how you think, the decisions you make, how you act, it controls everything. Dr. Amen scanned hundreds of brains looking for the normal brain and in the end discovered that if you struggle, that's normal. In life we make decisions that are either above 100IQ decisions or below 100 IQ decisions. When your brain works right, you work right but the opposite also holds true. You definitely want to keep your decisions above 100 IQ if you want a high performance life.
      Amen clinic has a test called the SPECT test, unlike CAT and MRI scans this test  measures brain  function. The images he shows comparing a healthy brain and a non healthy brain are quite dramatic.  The quality of the decisions you make are a direct reflection of the health of your brain. With a healthy brain you are happier, healthier, wealthier, wiser and you make better decisions and you are more successful. With an unhealthy brain, you are sadder, sicker poorer, less wise and make poorer decisions and you end up less successful. Unfortunately your brain gets less and less active with age much like the rest of the body, the brain deteriorates. You do have a choice,  you can slow or even reverse the aging process with his recommendations. You have to know your motivation to have a healthy brain. Identify that specifically for yourself. Do you have children and grand children you want to stay healthy for? A great mission and purpose to stay healthy for? Get clear. Write down five positive reasons. Being mentally slow is not normal, it is a sign of a brain in trouble. Next write down five negative reasons, things maybe you want to avoid like Alzheimer's and aging diseases. Alzheimer's disease is expected to triple in the next 25 years and there is no known cure. The key to avoiding this horrible disease is to avoid all the illnesses associated with it. The best predictor of longevity are the people you hang out with. Healthy habits are contagious. There is a condition called the dinosaur syndrome that means that as your weight goes up the actually physical size and function of your brain goes down. Big body, little brain, become extinct. Obese people have 8% less brain tissue and their brains looked 16 years older than healthy people. Physical health is directly related to mental health. Fat stores toxins and being overweight causes inflammation in your body and inflammation starts to kill everything. Use anchor images to remind you why you must be healthy. Do others depend on you? Put these images front and center every day. You need to understand the health of your brain. 7 or 8 hours of sleep is critical to brain health.
Lower blood supply to the brain causes inferior decisions.
      One story in particular he shares hits very close to home. It is about a man who had a horribly unhealthy brain, much like a drug addicts or an alcoholic. The doctor asked what he did for a living. Turns out he worked in a furniture factory spending his days finishing furniture. He was doing drugs, in fact the worst kind, inhaling organic solvents. He mentions the dangers of people that work in hair salons around toxic substances with their brain being damaged. This is clearly one of the best arguments for the Valentino beauty pure to date. Alzheimer's disease starts in your brain 30-50 years before you have any symptoms.  What to avoid? Avoid things that hurt your brain, do things that are good for your brain. and even if you have been bad to your brain, getting on a brain healthy program can start to reverse the aging process.  
     Even though your brain is only 2% of your body's weight, it uses 20-30 percent of the calories you consume. It uses 20% of the oxygen and blood flow. Be more thoughtful of what you feed your brain. Your decisions either accelerate or decelerate the process of aging your brain.  Drugs and alcohol, right, bad for your brain. Avoid Obesity, treat sleep apnea if necessary. Smoking constricts your blood vessels starving the brain of oxygen, prematurely aging your brain. Caffeine is not our friend it  constricts blood flow, dehydrates you and your brain is 80% water, not a good combination. It's addictive, it interrupts sleep, increases stress which puts fat on your belly and effects memory centers. The answer to needing caffeine is getting more sleep, it is hugely important.  Diabetes and High blood pressure affect brain health. Toxins, maybe mold growing? Low hormone levels and low levels of vitamin D. Poor diet, too much sugar increases inflammation not good for the brain. Chronic stress kills cells in the memory center. Untreated depression doubles your risk for Alzheimer's disease. Untreated ADD. Lack of exercise, Poor decisions , unhealthy peer group and not knowing your brains own vulnerability round out the list. What are the things to do?

 Make good decisions

 Have a positive peer group

Protect the brain

Clean environment

Physical health

8 hours of sleep

Keep learning new things.

Healthy weight

Great diet

Wise calorie spending

Get rid of your ANT thinking. Automatic negative thinking.

Stress management



To watch the presentation in its entirety visit this site
High Performance Academy

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