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Posts tagged neurofeedback
Broken Brain

Mark Hyman MD is the Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Functional Medicine, the Founder of The UltraWellness Center, and a ten-time #1 New York Times Bestselling author. At the peak of his career, he suffered a broken brain, causing him to turn into someone he no longer recognized. He felt like he suffered from depression, ADD, and dementia all at once. 

The epidemic of the broken brain is something you feel, hide, and fear. It is the leading cause of disability and effects 1.1 billion people around the world. 1 in 6 children, 1 in 2 elderly, and 1 in 4 people during their lifetime are effected by this epidemic. Mark Hyman MD created a docuseries, Broken Brain, to help transform your understanding of brain health. It is a series describing everything he learned on his journey to curing his broken brain, as well as diving in to the top brain disorders and learning why they happen and how to address their main root causes. This docuseries reveals what conditions like Alzheimer's, Dementia, ADHD, Autism, Depression, Anxiety, and Brain Fog have in common. Many root causes of brain disorders are outside of the brain. The rest of the body can play a huge part on mood, memory, attention, and behavior problems. 

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Of all the highlights and benefits learned from this eight episode series, here are the top 5 take aways Mark Hyman MD and his team learned from the Broken Brain docuseries. 

1. The Gut-Brain Connection
According to Dr. Raphael Kellman, gut and brain expert, "Embryologically, the gut and the brain start out at the same point, and then one goes up and one goes down. When two cells start from the same place, they always retain a memory for each other. They’re constantly speaking to each other in so many different ways. They’re communicating messages to each other. These messages are part of a communication system that really outshines any type of communication system that we know of today with our modern technology." The gut is considered your second brain. Therefore, a healthy gut leads to a healthy brain. By keeping our intestines and microbiome healthy and clean, our brain will remain healthy. 

2. Brain Health is Connected to Blood Sugar
Blood sugar is related to a healthy brain, especially memory loss. Experts are calling Alzheimer's type 3 diabetes. Dr. Ann Hathaway states, "When your blood sugar is high, it pumps your insulin high, and insulin is inflammatory. Inflammation is a major factor in cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease. Also, high blood sugar causes something called glycation, where the proteins throughout your body, including in your brain, get a sugar molecule added to them. That addition of a sugar molecule to a protein is damaging—that’s actual damage to that particular molecule in your brain." It is important to keep your blood sugar low so that no additional sugar molecules damage your brain. 

3. The Thyroid and Your Brain
An unhealthy thyroid can cause anxiety, depression, brain fog, and many other mental health disorders. Dr. Izabella Wentz suggests, "For people with Hashimoto’s and for thyroid disease, focus on eating a whole-food-based diet that’s minimally processed. I’ve seen the most benefit from patients going on a Paleo diet, as well as the Autoimmune Paleo Diet. We see symptoms like headaches, panic attacks, palpitations, weight gain, fatigue, all these symptoms begin to melt away when we get rid of the reactive foods and focus on eating organic, wild-caught, and real foods." 

4. The Role of Fats in Brain Health
A low-fat diet is not always the answer. By avoiding all fats, we avoid the good fats. Dr. John Ratey states "omega-3 fatty acids are perhaps as good a treatment for things like bipolar illness as are some of our bipolar drugs. With that came a whole lot of research looking at omega-3s as a way to treat mood, anxiety, ADD, and autism. It has a positive effect on all of those pervasive problems. Plus, it’s great for the heart, skin, bones, the connections in our body, and also treats arthritis and the like.” Don't cheat yourself of the fats your body and brain need to stay healthy.

5. The Role of Community in Brain Health
One of the biggest take aways these experts had from this docuseries is the importance of community. According to John Ratey, "real connection is vital, and I call this vitamin O—vitamin oxytocin. Oxytocin is the thing that mammals get when they’re in a community, touching one another, hugging, and they’re sitting down eating together. That sharing, that social bonding that happens, that glue that cements us together is really important." As we grow older, it is important to remember to take our prescribed medicine, get exercise, but most importantly stay social and connected to your community. 

Watch the entire 8 episode docuseries for free to learn more about your brain health. Watch episode 4 to learn more about ADHD and autism. Watch episode 5 to learn more about anxiety and depression.

If you have questions about these services and how they can affect you or your child or would like to schedule an appointment, please contact us. For more information on therapy, visit FAQ at Hilber Psychological Services

Written by Allison Parker and Tanya L. Hilber, PsyD

Reference: Hyman, Mark. “5 Things We Learned from the Broken Brain Docuseries.” Dr. Mark Hyman, Hyman Digital, 5 Jan. 2018, drhyman.com/blog/2017/10/27/5-things-learned-broken-brain-docuseries/.

Important Sleep Hygiene

Getting enough sleep seems to be a universal, yet unattainable goal. Sleep is so important for physical and mental capabilities. Sleep is necessary to recover from the day, rebuild muscle, form long-term memories, and even helps your heart, teeth, and weight.

Beginning and maintaining your sleep hygiene can make you feel stronger and healthier. By following just a few (or all) of these steps, you can develop better sleep hygiene to feel better and tackle those daily obstacles that come your way.

The first step is to determine what time is best to go to bed and wake up. Once you decide what time works best for your family and schedules, stick to that time every day. Generally, that time at night when you find yourself yawning suddenly and feel tired is the best time to head to bed. Research has been showing that people who go to bed earlier in the evening are less likely to have mental health problems. Having a consistent schedule allows your body and mind to adjust to that routine.

The next step is to create a routine for bedtime and in the morning. This could be anything that you feel helps your sleep, but may be the same steps in the same order before that time you decided is the best time for you. For example, one hour before you go to bed you turn off electronic devices, prepare your clothes and lunch for the next day, then wash your face and brush your teeth, and finally head to bed.

The final step is limit distractions at night so you can actually go to bed at the time you determined to be the best. This means not checking your email or cleaning the kitchen at that time, and turning the television off. This can also include ways to help find balance in your day by exercising and eating well throughout the day.

Sometimes sleep is still elusive even after you complete these steps on a regular basis. Sleep is very important for brain functioning and tolerating the stress of every day life. You may need to take extra steps to obtain good sleep.

If you would like more information on getting better sleep, contact us at Hilber Psychological Services or San Diego Center for Neurofeedback.

What kinds of things do you do to for sleep?

Adult ADHD: How is it different than childhood ADHD?

As mentioned in a previous news post by Dr. Filizetti, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may "look" different in adults when compared to children. We know that ADHD persists into adulthood; however, it tends to affect adults differently than children. When we think of childhood ADHD, we often picture the hyperactive child that cannot sit still and struggles to focus in class. However, hyperactivity remits in adulthood, and is apt to interfere with ones performance in different ways. For example, adults with ADHD may be at higher risk for driving difficulties or speeding through traffic.  Adults may also struggle with reading comprehension or sustained attention while reading.

As required for a diagnosis of childhood ADHD, symptoms must be evident in multiple settings, and interfere with the person’s ability to succeed in a variety of areas. In children, ADHD interferes with  performance at school, home, and sports. However, adult ADHD may impact relationships, college  coursework, and/or ones ability to succeed in the workplace.

Adult ADHD: Assessment and Treatment

As with childhood ADHD, adult ADHD is evaluated and diagnosed by a psychologist. When you meet with the psychologist they will likely ask you about your personal history, observe you behaviorally, and administer a variety of tests to assess whether or not you meet criteria for ADHD. Upon completing an ADHD evaluation, the evaluator will recommend various types of treatments that best fit your individual needs. Treatment for adult ADHD includes: Neurofeedback, Biofeedback, Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and/or medication management.

For more information about assessment or treatment of ADHD, feel free to contact Dr. Filizetti. Written by Dr. Kirstin Filizetti.