We’ve all heard it a million times: “The Gut-Brain Connection.” A new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reinforces that what’s on your plate really does affect your brain’s performance.
New research suggests that consuming wild blueberries daily for just 12 weeks improves cognitive function.
Blueberries are rich in polyphenols and scientists hypothesize that this is what gives blueberries their brain-boosting power. Other foods rich in polyphenols include blackberries, elderberry, cherries, dark chocolate, and spinach.
In the study, freeze-dried wild blueberry powder (WBB) containing 302 mg anthocyanins or a matched placebo was given to 61 healthy older individuals aged 65-80 years old. A significant improvement in cognitive performance following WBB treatment was observed compared with placebo. Additionally, a reduction in systolic blood pressure was found in the WBB group compared with the placebo group. The conclusion of the study was that daily intake of WBB powder, equivalent to 178 g fresh weight, improves vascular and cognitive function and decreases systolic blood pressure in healthy older individuals.
As we know, with all nutritional supplementation, the powerful effects of these nutrients are dependent on their interaction with the bacteria in your digestive tract so having a healthy gut is the start to any health plan and also why we always recommend consulting with your doctor about adding any new supplements to your daily routine to ensure it matches your individual needs.
At Natural Medicine of Denver we often recommend a comprehensive stool analysis for our patients as a tool for advanced testing of digestive function. With a comprehensive stool analysis we are able to evaluate the presence of good, neutral, and bad bacteria that reside in their digestive tract. Sometimes there is an infection of a pathogen in the digestive tract that may have been festering for quite some time at a low level and requires medical treatment. Other times there is simply an imbalance of beneficial to non-beneficial bacteria colonizing the digestive tract. A comprehensive stool analysis takes the guesswork out of why our patients are suffering from GI upset by helping us actually see what needs to be rebalanced and appropriately implement the right treatment plan that is tailored to their GI flora.
Did you know at Natural Medicine of Denver you have the opportunity to build a TEAM of integrative practitioners to support your health goals? You can meet with our naturopathic doctors, our registered dietician and our ayurvedic practitioner to design a holistic health plan tailored to your specific needs… we think that’s pretty UNIQUE!!
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