Being in the Business of Brainpower…

Rocket Science

By Anne Laing & Tim Bean –

Back in the early days of the fitness industry we used to say “Staying in shape is simple – shut your mouth and move your legs. This isn’t rocket science.”

But hold on: this really is rocket science, as human beings are made up of incredibly complex systems, of which we are only just scratching the surface of understanding. We have systems in the body that need to be functioning optimally, as well as our mental and emotional well-being.

At ground level you have to know and apply the basics in order to prevent, what we call The Three Corporate Career Killers: ‘bail-out’, ‘burn-out’ or being ‘booted out’ from work – or even family.

The good news is that rocket science isn’t difficult for a rocket scientist. Flying a jumbo jet isn’t difficult for a jumbo jet pilot. And being a human being shouldn’t be difficult for a human being. You just have to learn how to do it and, when there is a genuine desire to take control of managing your body, it all becomes easier.

In the quest for a healthy body, one of the most overlooked areas is the brain. Studies suggest we start to lose our edge around the age of 40 when the brain shows signs of slowing. Many will experience some symptoms of mental deterioration, such as impaired concentration, short-term memory loss and difficulties learning new information.

The delicate balance of neurotransmitter production in the brain can be altered by hormone imbalances, chemical pollutants, medications or the choices we make regarding what we eat and drink.

Whenever you drink too much alcohol, or skip a nutrient-dense meal, or only ever eat starchy beige or white foods, you are not only depleting your body, but also starving your brain. It can take just a short time to see some of the effects: irritability, forgetfulness or food cravings. After many years this eventually leads to the formation of brain cell plaques and dementia.

A normal brain processes a thought at roughly one third of a second and the difference between a sharp functioning mind and senility is only a matter of milliseconds. Your brain speed is based on how quickly these electrical signals are processed. This rate is your real brain age, which can be quite different from your chronological age.

You can help safeguard against dementia, depression and other brain disorders.

How?

A healthy brain begins with a diet rich in high quality foods, low in processed grains and sugars, and your own on-going thirst for knowledge. Studies are now linking a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s and brain shrinkage to those who eat a low-processed, high-plant and lean-protein diet.

This goes hand-in-hand with a suite of habits to help routine and planning. The power of eight is a good start.

8 coloured vegetables a day

8-inch plate

8 glasses of pure clean water

8 hours sleep a night, and

8,000 footsteps a day

Also:

– Avoid artificial sweeteners and MSG flavour enhancers found in many different food preparations that cause excito-toxicity within the brain.

– Add detoxifying greens such as Chlorella, Spirulina and green smoothies to detox heavy metals that affect the brain.

– Sleep. Get your 8 hours. Your brain builds up toxic waste during a busy working day. It needs restorative sleep to clean up and defrag.

– Take regular exercise. This produces greater blood flow to the brain and strengthens brain cell connections, protecting them from damage.

– Know your numbers. Keep your blood pressure, blood sugar and homocysteine in check. Balance waning hormones with bio-identical help from an anti-ageing specialist.

– Be social and connected, sure, but take time to disconnect and relax.

– Take up a hobby that challenges your brain.

– Never stop learning – go for mentally stimulating jobs that keep you challenged.

– Immerse yourself in another culture -new languages are a start. Russian, Arabic or Mandarin are the most difficult if you want to be really challenged.

– Get out of your comfort zone – challenge your business brain and seek out tough assignments. Take up public speaking!

– Manage stress – Seek out laughter and a yoga class…or the other way around (!)

What’s the link for business?

Like disease, stress manifests itself in a weakened body first and, regardless of the industry you are in, your business essentially runs on brainpower, so there’s tremendous value in protecting and preserving, what we call, your “Cerebral Capital”™. The mental capacity and function of key talent within your organisation is possibly the most valuable asset your business has.

You won’t find this on any balance sheet, yet the cost if something goes wrong – to the business, its customers and to families – is enormous. Incalculable even.

What is good for the body is always good for the brain!

There’s more information, discussion and strategic action points in our latest book “The Wealthy Body in Business” out now. Order your copy HERE

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Sleep: What’s All the Fuss About..?

Feet in Bed By Anne Laing –

We know that sleep deprivation affects concentration and reaction time, but did you also know that your memory is affected, your emotions go haywire, and levels of your fat-regulating hormone leptin decrease whilst increasing the hunger hormone ghrelin?

Another of the less-well-known problems associated with lack of sleep is the inhibition of the immune system to perform a plethora of vital clean-up and regenerative functions at night. This nocturnal activity is absolutely necessary for a healthy brain and body in daily life.

When this capacity is limited, the negative side-effects become more pronounced, especially when people are already sick, have hormonal imbalances or are not generally healthy due to lifestyle choices.  They will not heal as fast, they’ll feel foggy-headed, and become susceptible to new illnesses and reoccurring relapses.  It now becomes much harder for the body to defend against internal foreign invaders and external toxins.

In the lab, seriously sleep-deprived animals actually die, as their immune systems fail to cope and shut down. “If humans endure a total lack of sleep for more than 10 days – they die too” says Professor Dr Jason Ellis, head of the International Sleep Research Facility at Northumberland University.

Chronic lack of sleep has a profound effect on your entire physiological system, from your furthest toe to the centre of your brain. So here are three things you can do from tonight to ensure you get a better night’s sleep:

  1. Turn all lights off, and devices that emit light. You can sense sources of light through your eyelids, so make your room as close to pitch black as possible. Light signals your brain that it’s time to wake up and starts preparing your body for ACTION. Also avoid using loud alarm clocks. It is very stressful on your body to be suddenly jolted awake. If you are regularly getting enough sleep, an alarm may even be unnecessary.
  2. Often a deficiency of magnesium is related to poor sleeping patterns and irritability, and therefore magnesium supplements can be useful for correcting this.  Taurateas Magnesium reduces physical tension, and Taurate calms the chemical responses of the nervous system.  5-HTP (5-HydroxyTryptoPhan) can also be helpful to take at night immediately before bed.  Turkey meat contains Tryptophan, which is why it often makes you feel drowsy after eating it.  Put about a cup of Epsom Salts (Magnesium Sulphate) in your bath.
  3. If sleep disruption is constant, or your energy crashes during the day without reason, have your hormones checked by a specialist anti-ageing doctor.

All set? Right, now go clean your teeth and get to bed..!

Triple Whammy For Men

By Anne Laing – Overworked businessman relaxing from his stress rubbing his neck

Abdominal obesity, Low blood testosterone, and Erectile Dysfunction (E.D.).

These problems are not just aesthetic. Gut fat reduces blood testosterone levels, which decreases sex drive, the capacity for erections, energy levels, aggressiveness in business and self-confidence, according to the Journal of Sexual Medicine 12/2007

Erection problems often stem from abnormalities in the cell lining of the male blood vessels.  Healthy cells secrete a chemical called nitric oxide, which is very important for delivering blood to the penis and other body tissues.  Blood vessels in the ‘out-of-shape man’ lose their capacity to control blood flow and therefore are unable to instigate healthy erections.  Excess abdominal fat is a sure sign of poor metabolic health and low nitric oxide release.

Triple Threat 

So guys, too much abdominal fat presents a triple threat; women perhaps won’t find you as attractive, low testosterone destroys your drive, and sexual performance goes down the drain.

Solution:

1. Testosterone levels are increased by reducing alcohol, caffeine, processed fats and sugars in the diet.

2.  Lifting weights and building muscle will help burn abdominal fat off faster, and stimulate production of Human Growth Hormone, DHEA and Testosterone.

3.  Check your free testosterone levels with a doctor experienced in bio-identical treatment of testosterone deficiency, such as The Centre for Men’s health: www.centreformenshealth.co.uk

It is important to get 1 & 2 right first, and the results will be dramatic.