Friday, December 08, 2006

Yes! The Brain Regenerates:

Conventional medical wisdom has held that people are born with all of the brain cells they will ever have. You may recall being told as a teenager that experimentation with drugs or alcohol would kill your brain cells, and you would “never get them back,” or something to that effect.

Teenagers are at risk. Recent studies have shown a serious consequence of teenage drinking. The brain stops producing certain transmitters, and the result can mean a lifelong tendency to depression, “brain fog,” and learning difficulties.

However, scientists have found that cells in the region of the brain responsible for memory and learning can indeed regenerate. In at least one area of the brain, the hippocampus, researchers can see a continual turnover of cells throughout our lives.

We have the opportunity to make use of this exciting information today. By paying attention to the little things we can do to support healthy brains, we further the possibilities for vibrant, engaged aging. Take a moment to ponder your ideas about the later years of your life. Are you able to imagine being highly active in your community, surrounded by friends, making a significant contribution? This is what I want to further. I have the privilege today of knowing many highly creative people who are well past the 50-year mark. My desire is to continue to grow my own brain, and to be part of the information stream now reaching out to the entire population to inspire us all to activate brain health. With high levels of connection, innovation, and inspiration, we have a great future to create.

Meanwhile, here's a little brain health exercise: breathe, smile and relax.


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