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Condition - Spotlight on memory and concentration

By Jenny Bodenham BA (Hons) DipION, MBANT

Losing memory or concentration can affect us greatly and may mean that even day-to-day tasks can be difficult. Each person may experience memory or concentration loss to a different degree and for some it can be mild such as “baby brain” in pregnancy. More severe types of memory impairment include dementia or Alzheimer’s. Whatever the cause, it is a very distressing and worrying condition for the sufferer.

Contributing factors

• Age

• Pregnancy

• Poor circulation

• Stress

• Poor diet

• Toxin build up – such as heavy metals like aluminium or lead

• Damage by free radicals

Nutrients

• Anti-oxidants – vitamins C & E plus selenium, zinc and others such as alpha lipoic acid, CoQ10 and lycopene may reduce damage to brain cells caused by free radicals.

• Fish oils (EPA/DHA) – a natural component of brain tissue. Low levels of omega 3 have shown to be linked with an impaired ability to think effectively.

• B vitamins – needed by the brain and nerve cells for healthy functioning.

Lecithin – is a good source of phosphatidyl choline, necessary for the production of acetylcholine.

Phosphatidyl serine – studies have shown it improves mental function.

• Acetyl L Carnitine and DMAE – supports memory enhancing brain chemicals.

• Ginkgo biloba – has been shown to support a good circulation.

Periwinkle – has also been shown to support a good circulation.

Arginine pyroglutamate – aids in opening up blood vessels and improving circulation.

Nutritional advice 

• Balance blood sugar – eat little and often and ensure that good sources of protein such as eggs, cottage cheese, oily fish, nuts and seeds, are included with each meal or snack.

• Avoid sugar, refined foods, alcohol, teas and coffees.

• Eat two to three portions a week of oily fish such as sardines, mackerel, herring, salmon or trout to provide essential omega 3 fatty acids.

• Drink 11/2 to 2 litres of water daily to keep blood circulating efficiently.

• Ensure you have lots of fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet to provide anti-oxidants to offer protection.

Lifestyle advice

Minimise exposure to pollution, additives, preservatives and pesticides.

• Keep active to improve circulation take regular walks and exercise two to three times a week for 30 minutes at a time.

  


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