by: Dr. Craig A. Maxwell
When we talk about distorted brain function and neurological health problems, we often think of serious disorders such as dementia, Alzheimer’s or Multiple Sclerosis. But what about the everyday function of your brain and nervous system? If you’re experiencing brain fog, poor memory, and other mild but troublesome problems with your brain, your diet and environment could be to blame.
All about Your Brain – Common Neurological Health Problems
When dealing with your neurological health, most doctors do not worry about you until you’re trembling, unable to speak properly, and extremely forgetful. But did you know your brain gives you early warning signs before dementia or other serious brain problems take over? Let’s take a look at some of the most common (and treatable) neurological health problems you may experience everyday.
- Poor Memory
Poor memory is a common human brain problem that affects millions of people both young and old. You may have difficulty remembering dates, faces, people, or where you put your car keys. You may even forget important appointments or struggle with somebody’s name. Every once in the while, this is normal, however if poor memory is common for you and you’re under 55 years of age, this could be a sign of a neurological health problem.
- Muscle Tics and Twitches
A fluttering eyelid is no cause for alarm but what about muscles that jump, tic, and twitch off and on throughout the day? Anxiety, developmental disorders, and certain medications can cause this problem. As can a certain substance you probably put into your body each day. (Read on to find out what it is!)
- Brain Fog
Many people think brain fog is normal and it’s anything but. If your thinking is often muddled, slow, and disconnected, it might be a sign that you have an autoimmune disorder or undiagnosed food allergy. Brain fog can also be a side effect of medication and certain foods.
- Anxiety and Depression
Anxiety and depression are both considered mental health problems but they fall into the category of brain function as well. Oftentimes, conventional doctors will tell you there’s a chemical imbalance in your brain causing your depressed mood or feelings of anxiety but they won’t tell you what’s causing the imbalance. Most need look no further than their diet or environment for the answer.
- Behavioral Dysfunction
Inability to control one’s impulses, speech, thoughts, and actions are common examples of behavioral dysfunction. You may or may not have a history of mental illness or developmental disorder and the behavioral problems may have been with you since childhood.
- Learning Impairment
Learning impairment is another common neurological health problem that is often ignored by both conventional medicine and the sufferer. This is because conditions such as ADHD and Asperger’s syndrome are often difficult to detect in adults and embarrassment and frustration often inhibit adults from seeking medical advice.
Causes of Poor Neurological Health
Oftentimes, poor neurological health isn’t caused by a serious brain or spinal cord problem; it’s the result of a combination of dietary and environmental factors that often go ignored by conventional medicine.
- Dietary Factors
One of the most commonly overlooked causes of brain, memory, and other neurological health problems is diet. Processed foods such as candy, cereal, and soda contain additives that have been clinically proven to cause neurological problems.
This is especially true for soda drinkers because of the chemical sweetener, aspartame. Aspartame has an incredible 92 different physical and mental health symptoms associated with it! Do the symptoms of aspartame poisoning sound familiar to you?
Food dyes are another common contributor of brain fog, behavioral problems, and ADHD-like symptoms. According to studies, Red #40 and other food dyes have been proven to contribute to aggressive tendencies and learning difficulties, especially in children and young adults.
Undiagnosed gluten intolerance is another common cause of unexplained neurological problems. People with gluten intolerance are unable to digest the sticky protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and some oat products.
When a person with intolerance to gluten consumes this protein, their immune system attacks their gut, causing chronic inflammation and malabsorption of nutrients. Nutrient deficiencies combined with the opiate effect gluten has on the brain can contribute to anxiety, depression, muscle twitches, staring gaze, learning impairment and psychosis.
- Environmental Causes
Another overlooked cause of strange neurological symptoms and memory problems is environment. Many household cleaning products and cosmetics you use every day contain hormone disruptors and neurotoxins that can be damaging to your brain. Do you use one of those scented plug-in sprays? Even worse. Your brain and body are bombarded by hundreds of chemical toxins in the environment on a daily basis, you don’t need to purposely add more. Even if you eat an all-organic diet and exercise regularly, these toxins will still negatively impact your health.
Certain medications for anxiety, depression, and allergies can contribute to brain fog, irritability, behavioral, and learning problems. They may also contribute to muscle twitching or numbness.
Vaccines contain high levels of mercury as a preservative and have been known to contribute to severe neurological health problems, including seizures and paralysis. The Gardasil vaccine, for example, has caused neurological injury to thousands of young women.
- Other Medical Causes
- Mercury Fillings
Mercury fillings have been known to cause mercury toxicity, which can cause muscle twitches, tremors, irritability, mental confusion, and learning disabilities. If you suspect your mercury fillings are causing problems in your brain, you can look into getting them removed by a holistic dentist.
Intestinal parasites are not just a Third-World country problem, it is estimated that over 50% of the United State’s population is infected with some type of parasitic organism. Depending on the type of infection present, parasites can inflict serious neurological damage. Symptoms of parasitic infection are often gastrointestinal and mental.
- Systemic Candida Infection
Candida normally lives in the digestive tract and reproductive organs. However, if this yeast gets out of control due to excessive antibiotic use, chronic alcohol use, excessive intake of refined flour and sugar or excessive use of NSAID pain relievers, the yeast can grow out of control. Once candida gets into the blood and brain, it can seriously impact neurological health.
Healing Your Brain and Nervous System with Natural Remedies
Oftentimes, the brain and body is prevented from being at its healthiest because of the constant damage we unknowingly inflict upon it. Taking these steps to change your lifestyle and behavior can have a profound impact on helping your body and brain heal itself.
- Testing for Imbalances and Sensitivities
One of the first rules of improving neurological health is testing for imbalances in the body. This means determining whether or not food allergies, parasites, leaky gut syndrome or chronic candida infection have something to do with your mysterious symptoms.
If you’re struggling with your brain health, I recommend three basic tests:
1) Alcat Comprehensive Wellness 1-Kit, which tells you exactly what foods and chemicals you are sensitive too, and how severely. When you’re dealing with food and chemical sensitivities, it is nearly impossible to narrow them all down on your own. Just take it to the nearest Labcorp office for blood drawing and they pack it and send it off for you! You should receive your results in 7-10 business days.
2) Doctor’s Data Comprehensive Stool Analysis x 3 DD Kit, which evaluates for parasites, all strains of yeast, leaky gut, dysbiotic bacteria, digestive enzymes, digestion capability, and even a count of all probiotics!
3) Dr. Maxwell’s Comprehensive Test Panel – Men and Women, which checks for hormone imbalances, vitamin deficiencies, thyroid problems, and more. It is one of the most comprehensive blood tests you can take and it is almost guaranteed to help you get to the bottom of your mystery symptoms. Just select the one for your gender, visit a LabCorp office with the kit to have your blood drawn and your results should be available for you in 7-10 business days.
- Dietary Changes
Cutting processed food from your diet may be one of the best things you can do to improve your brain health. Instead, dine on a whole-food diet of omega-3-rich wild-caught fish, organic meat, organic vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, whole grains, dairy, and healthy fats. This will provide your body with the nutrients it needs for proper brain function.
- Environmental Changes
Throw out the chemical cleaners, sprays, and cosmetics. If your neurological problems started after you got a new mattress or carpet, this also could be the culprit. Be aware of your environment and take steps to make it as green and natural as possible.
I recommend the following supplements for improving brain health:
Diamond Nutritionals’ Foundation Vitamins are high-quality dietary supplements designed for maximum absorption with no chemical ingredients.
Foundation’s formula includes:
- Vitamin A – 7,500 IU
- Vitamin C – 500 mg
- Vitamin D3 – 500 IU
- Vitamin E – 100 IU
- Vitamin K – 50 mcg
- Thiamine – 25 mg
- Riboflavin – 25 mg
- Niacin – 25 mg
- Vitamin B6 – 38 mg
- Folic Acid – 400 mcg
- Vitamin B12 – 500 mcg
- Biotin – 200 mcg
- Panthothenic Acid – 150 mg
- Calcium – 100 mg
- Iodine – 113 mcg
- Magnesium – 200 mg
- Zinc – 10 mg
- Selenium – 100 mcg
- Copper – 1 mg
- Manganese – 2.5 mg
- Chromium – 200 mcg
- Molybdenum – 25 mcg
- Potassium – 50 mg
- Choline Bitartrate USP – 50 mg
- Inositol – 50 mg
- Mixed Tocopherols – 50 mg
- Lipoic Acid – 25 mg
- N-Acetyl-Cysteine USP – 25 mg
- Rutin – 25 mg
- Lutein – 3 mg
- Boron – 1.5 mg
- Lycopene – 1 mg
- Vanadyl Sulfate Hydrate – 1 mg
Diamond Nutritional’s Balanced Omega Formula
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential nutrients and they are a must for anyone dealing with any type of brain health issue. Unfortunately, most store-bought fish oils are loaded with mercury that can make neurological health problems worse.
Also, most products may claim to contain 1,000 mg. or 1,200 mg. on the front label, but on the back label the EPA and DHA may only add up to 300 mg. or so. The rest are nothing but fillers. Diamond Nutritionals’ Balanced Omega Formula contains nothing but 100% molecularly distilled fish oil for powerful, brain-healing nutrition!
Diamond Nutritional’s Probiotic Formula
Oftentimes, low gut bacteria can cause poor neurological health. This is because brain and gut health are so closely connected. For my patients, I recommend Diamond Nutritionals’ Probiotic Formula. Unlike other probiotic formulas, this brand contains no harmful additives, colors or fillers and offers 20 billion colony forming units with six strains of good bacteria in each serving. These strains include lactobacillus acidophilus, lactobacillus paracasei, bifidobacterium lactis, bifidobacterium bifidum, lactobacillus plantarum, lactobacillus rhamnosus, and saccharomyces boulardii.
Magnesium and Vitamin D3
For better sleep and a calmer, more relaxed mind, I recommend Diamond Nutritionals’ Chelated Magnesium. Chelated magnesium is ideal because it contains some of the smallest minerals available, making it more bioavailable to the body. Each serving contains 59% of your daily value of this essential mineral!
Since most of us do not get nearly the amount of sunlight our great-grandparents did, vitamin D3 deficiency is the most common vitamin deficiency in the world today. Though most conventional physicians will tell you 200-400 IUs of vitamin D3 is more than enough, recent evidence has suggested most people need far more than that to achieve optimum health. For my patients dealing with neurological health problems, I recommend Diamond Nutritionals’ Vitamin D3 5,000 IUs. This formula contains no artificial ingredients and comes in easy-to-swallow capsules.
Learning all about your brain can help you improve your neurological health and help you achieve your goals in life. The human brain is a fine and complicated instrument that needs to be protected and nourished if it is to function at its best. Now that you know some better ways to take care of your neurological health, you’re on your way to optimum wellness.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Maxwell, please call us at 513-741-4404. We will be glad to assist you and answer any questions you may have.