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Boost and Fortify Your Second Brain



Two heads are better than one is an old saying that relates to brainstorming with another. But scientific studies are discovering another aspect of increasing mental acuity and restoring or maintaining mental and emotional stability. It comes with acknowledging and nurturing your “second brain”. But it's it's not in your skull, it's in your gut. 



Your gut is a very important organ when it comes to physical and mental/emotional health. The awareness of intestinal flora deficiencies as the root causes of a wide spectrum of immunity and mental problems is constantly expanding. 

Gut flora is the term for micro-organisms that live in the gastrointestinal tract. There are 100 trillion of them compared to our 10 trillion cells. If the intestines were opened and spread out to expose their inner linings, they would cover a tennis court. 

So we need lots of good guys in the gut. They have been categorized by mainstream medicine as good for digestion, which is important. But they're much more important than that.

We have a symbiotic relationship with all these friendly bacteria that cover so much territory. Not only do they deter invading pathogens or kill some of the bad guys, but they also signal other aspects of our immune system in other parts of our bodies. That colony of helpful bacteria is sometimes called our "forgotten organ."

The relationship of friendly gut flora to pathogenic bacteria needs to be lopsided, around 85% good guys to 15% bad guys. When it goes the other way, all sorts of physical and mental problems can arise. When it comes to the immune system in general, probiotic bacteria in the lower gastrointestinal (GI) tract account for 60% to 80% of our immune system

Second Brain Aspects of Gut Flora 

Mentally, disorders ranging from ADD to autism in children and depression to mental fogginess in adults have been connected to intestinal flora imbalances that create inflammation of the gut and elsewhere. This is known as the "gut-brain axis".

Physically, a gut flora imbalance allows pathogenic bacteria and fungi to infect our bodies. Candida yeast overgrowth occurs, and guess what, people with Candida suffer from fatigue and depression. It's also been established that there is at least a symbiotic relationship between Candida and cancer.

Gut and/or bowel inflammation has been connected to depression in adults and autistic symptoms with children. Dr. Andrew Wakefield and others have pioneered research in those areas. 

Dr. Wakefield and his colleagues initially published a paper describing children brought to him with autistic disorders who were in great abdominal pain from gut inflammation that may have been caused by the MMR vaccines. All of them had recently been given the three in one MMR vaccine. 

All Dr. Wakefield did initially was recommend giving the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccinations separately at different times. He was unjustly attacked by vaccine industry's vested interests and assisted by vaccine advocate shills as well as an unscrupulous hit for hire journalist. 
But an independent study In 2001 by John O'Leary, Professor of Pathology at St James' Hospital and Trinity College, Dublin, replicated Wakefield's findings. A more recent independent study at Wake Forest University in North Carolina USA also corroborated Wakefield's findings

The latter study found measles viruses in kids with GI tract and bowel inflammations and autism spectrum disorders. But not from “wild” measles virus strains. The virus strain was cultured for the vaccines!

Russian born British doctor Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD went a step further and has actually cured autism and other mental and physical problems by restoring the intestinal flora balance through mostly dietary changes. 

She developed the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) diet to restore proper probiotic abundance and balance. She did this to cure her son of autism spectrum disorders successfully, which include ADHD, learning disorders, and fully incapacitating head-banging, painful autism.

Pharmaceuticals and GMOs Attack Our Probiotic Bacteria
There are many environmental and dietary issues that kill our friendly bacteria. The whole idea of killing bacteria has been overdone in our culture. Pasteurization, irradiation, and processed foods are the main culprits.

Obviously, eliminating those affected foods and engaging in a daily habit of whole, organic foods is vital. This dietary and lifestyle change takes progressively steady effort and vigilance, which you can update constantly by following this and other real (I don't like the word alternative) health sites.

Pharmaceutical medications, especially antidepressants and antibiotics, are the enemies of your friendly bacteria. Antibiotics carpet bomb your bacteria, creating an abundance of collateral damage by killing off a lot of the good guys and making it easier for the bad guys not initially targeted to rise and take over. 

GMOs wreak havoc on friendly bacteria too. It was assumed by genetic engineers that the transgenic gene used in most major GMOs would not survive the stomach's acidity intact. They were wrong.
The CaMV 35S or cauliflower mosaic virus promoter gene is a major part of the genetic tampering sequence. By surviving in the GI tract it keeps on messing with our probiotic bacteria and other viruses with unpredictable adverse results. Even if you don't take antibiotics or eat GMO food overtly, they have all surreptitiously invaded our food chain through other sources, especially meats from factory farm animals.

So it's important to maintain a steady supply of probiotics in your kitchen. Fermented foods, such as sauerkraut, Kim-chi, or miso are good to have around. Water or milk kefirs are great. It's much better to make your own of either or both to consume daily. Commercially sold kefirs and yogurts don't cut it, really. You can access DIY instructions for water kefir here and milk kefir here.

There are several good probiotic supplements on the market. They're important to add if you've been through serious stress, are struggling with Candida, or forced into medications, especially antibiotics. Try the ones with the highest amount of bacteria and the most strains.

Intensely probiotic foods and occasional probiotic supplements should be an essential part of our health regimen. Our kill-all-bacteria culture can't differentiate between the good guys and the bad guys. We have to do it ourselves.

10-Year Study Shows High Vitamin and Mineral Consumption Delays Aging



High consumption of vitamin and mineral-rich foods throughout early adulthood delays the biological process of aging, according to new data from South Korea.


The study, which followed the aging process of nearly 2,000 middle-aged and older adults for ten years, found that consumption of micronutrients including vitamin C, folate and potassium was associated with delayed biological aging.
Writing in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, the Korean researchers noted that until now there have been few studies investigating the potential association between nutrient intake and biological aging as measured by leukocyte telomere length (LTL) -- which they suggested "may reflect cumulative oxidative stress and indicate biological aging."

Can you add years to your life by making smarter food choices? Yes! There are many variables involved in how long you live, but by following a healthy lifestyle, staying active and eating a nutrient-packed diet, you can help slow the aging process and perhaps even stave off age-related diseases, including osteoporosis, diabetes and heart disease. 

Studies have shown that people who eat mostly plant-based foods look younger than their real physical age. And if that is true, it sure makes sense to include plant-based, anti-aging foods in our diet.
"We observed longitudinal positive associations between the consumption of vitamin C, folate and potassium and LTL, and these associations were more apparent in middle-aged adults compared to older participants," the team, led by J.-Y. Lee from Kookmin University in South Korea, said.
"Although the associations were moderate because dietary information was collected 10 years before LTL was measured, our findings are supportive, to a certain degree, of the hypothesis that earlier consumption of antioxidant nutrients and B-vitamins involved in one-carbon transfer pathways is associated with longer LTL, suggesting the effects of nutrient intake on biological aging."
Lee and colleagues investigated potential longitudinal associations between the consumption of micronutrients -- including antioxidant nutrients and B vitamins involved in one-carbon transfer pathways -- and LTL.
The population-based cohort, followed for ten years, included 1,958 middle-aged and older Korean men and women aged between 40 and 69 years at baseline.
"We collected dietary information at baseline using a semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire (...) and assessed the consumption of micronutrients, including vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B9 (folate), C and E, as well as calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iron and zinc," said the team -- adding that LTL was measured using real-time polymerase chain reaction at the 10-year follow-up examination.

Age Role
After adjusting for potential confounders, Lee and colleagues found that LTL was positively associated with the consumption of vitamin C (P < 0.05), folate (P = 0.05) and potassium (P = 0.05) in all participants.
"We observed no association between LTL and consumption of vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6 and E, calcium, phosphorus, iron and zinc," they added.
When the team then looked at how the age of participants played a role, using an age-stratified analysis, they found that the association between the consumption of vitamin C, folate and potassium with telomere length was significant only among participants under 50 years of age.
Such a result could partly be explained by a generational difference in consumption of vitamin C, folate and potassium -- though they added that the smaller sample size in older participants than in younger participants may also be a factor given that a previous cross-sectional that showed significant associations for vitamin C and folate intake did not show any age-related effect.
"Our findings suggest that the earlier consumption of vitamin C, folate and potassium, which are abundant in fruits and vegetables, can delay biological aging in middle-aged and older adults," concluded the South Korean team.

This First Appeared in Prevent Disease