Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Brain Poisons

Brain & neurological tissue are extremely sensitive regions of the body that are highly susceptible to damage.  Our culture is loaded with brain poison.  Some of the most damaging brain poisons include gluten, unfermented soy, blood sugar imbalances, poor posture, & a sedentary lifestyle. 
Gluten Sensitivity:  One of the most common nutritional/toxicity issues in our society today deals with the common protein found in wheat, barley, rye, oats, kamut, & spelt.  According to gluten researcher Kenneth Fine, up to 81% of our society has a gluten allergy.  When they are exposed to gluten there body has differing degrees of inflammatory responses.  Some individuals have mild inflammatory reactions while others have severe reactions.
The most vulnerable tissue to the inflammatory cascade in response to gluten is the brain & nervous system.  The immune molecules that are secreted (cytokines) destroy brain tissue and cause massive neurological damage.  The most common symptom associated with this reaction is "brain fog," memory problems, and mental fatigue. 
Unfermented Soy:  One of soy's primary isoflavones, genistein, has been shown to inhibit the enzyme tyrosine kinase in the brain.  The highest amounts of tyrosine kinases are found in the hippocampus, a brain region that is essential to learning & memory.  High soy consumption actually blocks this mechanism of memory formation.
Several studies have associated high intakes of tofu and other unfermented soy products to increased risk of dementia and cognitive impairments.  On the flip side, fermented soy products such as tempeh are associated with greater cognitive abilities.  Researchers hypothesize that this is due to the deep fermentation process removing enzyme inhibitors and phytoestrogens.  In addition, this process increases folate, a critical nutrient for brain & nervous system function.
Blood Sugar Imbalance:  The brain depends on a continual supply of glucose for energy.  A 2003 study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that people's memory is harmed by poor blood sugar metabolism. The slower the sugar metabolism in the body, the less fuel is available for the brain to store memories.  Stable blood sugar levels are critical for healthy brain and neuronal cells that fire quickly and efficiently.
Abnormal blood sugar levels also cause neuronal damage and weaken the protective blood-brain barrier.  This makes for easy passage of different toxins and other particles that will disrupt brain function.  A mechanism for Alzheimer's disease is that of poor blood sugar metabolism.  This pre-diabetic disorder opens the door in the blood brain barrier for toxic aluminum particles to cross-over and accumulate in the sensitive regions of the temporal lobe.     
Sedentary Living & Poor Posture:  The brain depends on oxygen and activation from muscle and joint receptors on acontinual basis.  A lack of motion equals a lack of oxygen generating energy getting up into the brain.  Poor posture and subluxation cause spinal joint receptors to fire abnormal, corrupted feedback patterns into the brain.  This causes further brain-body feedback problems and disrupted movement patterns in the body.  Chronically poor posture and uncorrected subluxation is one of the most detrimental factors for brain function.