guest post by Amy Trotter
Ever been asked how your mental faculties are? Probably not, or at the very least the question was likely posed in a more commonplace way of asking. But let’s take a look at the question just exactly as it is here, and start by weighing the meaning of the word ‘faculties’ in this context.
Merriam-Webster - the world’s premier online dictionary - provides 4 definitions for faculty. Definition 1b applies here, ‘an inherent capability, power, or function’
Does that sound like you and your brain? If so, great: your mental faculties are going strong. If not, perhaps you’d like to learn more about natural supplements to boost brain power. They do exist, and more than likely they can be found at your local pharmacy or health and wellness store.
Before we get to a discussion of the specific supplements and vitamins for improving brain performance, we want to introduce one more term; Nootropics (pronounced no-tropics). Nootropics are natural supplements or drugs that have a beneficial effect on brain function for people without any pre-existing debilitating condition.
Let’s start with one supplement that we recommend to everyone, one that should be ingested on a regular basis: fish oil. Fish Oil supplements are an optimal source of DHA (docosahexanoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), a pair of omega-3 fatty acids that are beneficial to brain health.
DHA is pivotal for the maintenance of your brain’s biological structure and overall function. It constitutes approximately 25% of the total fat, and 90% of the omega-3 fat, found in your brain cells. And brain cells that are full of fat are happy, healthy, sound functioning brain cells. More DHA results in improved thinking skills, memory, and reaction time.
EPA is also hugely beneficial, with its role in promoting anti-inflammatory effects that can protect the brain against damage and aging. More EPA results in improved mood.
As one of the ways to improve brain function, take fish oil supplements in either liquid or caplet form. Both can be found at any health food store, or supermarket. Alternately, you can eat more oily fish (mackerel is a great choice)
Brain Octane Oil
Seriously, brain octane oil? Yes - in the same way that an octane booster will improve the performance of your car as it burns a better quality fuel mixture, you can enhance your brain performance with brain octane oil, taken regularly. When ingested, it is converted into ketone energy, which can provide many of the same benefits as the oils and supplements above - but with much faster efficacy! It can be added to foods or - most popularly - into coffee to make bulletproof coffee.
Resveratrol is an antioxidant that’s found in the skin of grapes, raspberries and blueberries, among other fruits. It’s also found in chocolate, peanuts and - you guessed it - red wine.
Studies have shown that resveratrol can improve memory and overall brain function. Resveratrol can typically be purchased as a supplement in caplet form, and you then take it with food and based on the dosage indicated on the container.
This one is a real rejuvenator for your brain. Phosphatidylserine is a type of fat compound called a phospholipid, and these compounds are very helpful in maintaining the ‘flexibility’ of your brain, preventing you from being hard-headed or inflexible with your thinking or recognition and understanding of perspectives.
According to clinical studies, taking 100mg of phosphatidylserine 3 times per day can help reduce age-related brain function decline. Also, it’s effective for improving thinking skills and memory.
Acetyl-L Carnitine is an amino acid that’s produced naturally in the body, but for many people it’s not produced in sufficient quantity. This amino acid plays an important role in your metabolism, and energy production in particular. Regular consumption of acetyl-L carnitine supplements can lead to feeling more alert, enjoying improved memory, and a slowing down of age-related memory loss. It also prevents age-related declines in learning capacity.
Acetyl-L Carnitine is readily available in caplet form at most health food stores.
Give one or more of these a try, and judge the benefits for yourself. Have more capability, power, and function? Great, stick with your new supplement regimen!
Amy Trotter is an active, green-conscious health nut who loves to eat natural, organic fruits and vegetables. She regularly takes herbal supplements, exercises, and makes sure to laugh every day with her family and friends. She lives in the Costa Mesa with her husband and labrador, Lucy.