Mental and Cognitive Health
It’s one of the most ancient trees on earth… it can live to be 1,000 years old… and it could help YOU live a longer and healthier life.
I’m talking about ginkgo biloba.
The fan-shaped leaves of the ginkgo biloba tree have been used for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine for everything from aiding memory to fighting depression.
And now, according to the latest findings, we can add something else to that list — because ginkgo biloba appears to also improve brain function in those who’ve had a stroke.
In a new study out of China, over 300 people who’d already suffered a stroke were divided into two groups. Over the course of six months, half took a daily combination of ginkgo biloba and aspirin, while the other half took only the aspirin.
By the end of the study, it turned out that those taking ginkgo and aspirin scored HIGHER on tests of cognitive and language skills than those taking only aspirin.
Now, as you probably know, strokes happen when clots block blood flow to your brain, leading to damage in your gray matter.
All kinds of strokes — even so-called “mini-strokes” (a.k.a. transient ischemic attacks), as I shared with you this morning — can leave you with damage that’s bad enough to impair your memory and abilities to think and speak.
The theory is that ginkgo biloba can keep your brain sharp by guarding against the death of nerve cells and increasing blood flow to the arteries inside your noggin, as previous studies have shown it can do.
But ginkgo biloba’s healing potential isn’t just limited to your brain — because another new study shows that the Chinese herb may prevent colorectal cancer cells from spreading (a.k.a. “metastasizing”).
Taken together, these two new studies suggest that ginkgo biloba can help protect your health from the top of your head… to the “end” of your gut!
Even better, this ancient remedy has virtually no side effects.
You can easily find ginkgo biloba at your local drug store, health food emporium, or online.
Talk to a doc well versed in integrative medicine about the right dosage for you.
Like many older guys, I wear glasses. At my age, I’m helpless without them!
Father Time can really do a number on our vision as time goes by.
But it’s not just about reading the newspaper or a menu in a dark restaurant.
Because what’s going on in our eyes can tell us a lot about what’s going on in our brains!
Recently, I shared with you that certain changes in your retinas -- the light-sensitive nerve cells that line the back of your eyes -- may be an early sign of Alzheimer's disease.
And according to a new study, changes to your retina may also be one of the first symptoms of another neurodegenerative disease.
It’s one that I've lived with for over a dozen years: Parkinson’s.
South Korean researchers found that the retinas of Parkinson's patients were significantly thinner than those in group of healthy controls.
Not only that, but the Parkinson's patients with the THINNEST retinas also had the MOST SEVERE motor symptoms.
Fortunately, I’ve got a way to naturally support your vision AND your mobility – and it’ll all make sense once you understand the underlying mechanism behind why eye changes may lead to Parkinson’s.
It looks like the two are connected by the brain chemical dopamine.
You see, we've known for a while that the tremors and stiffness of Parkinson's are linked to the loss of neurons in your brain that produce dopamine.
And since dopamine can ALSO come from the nerve cells in your retina, the theory is that retinal cell death causes the same thing as when your dopamine-producing brain cells die off.
Only, this is a red flag that may start waving WAY before other noticeable changes.
Typically, Parkinson's is diagnosed based on a neurological exam -- and the doc might even scan your brain to take a gander at your dopamine system.
But a study last year found that Parkinson's vision changes may begin more than a DECADE before any motor problems show up!
So, the new study is a good reminder to get your eyes checked out regularly -- not only to screen for eye diseases, but also to gain "insight" into your general health.
After all, your eyes aren't just a window into what's going on in your brain.
Early signs of heart disease… diabetes… and even cancerous tumors often show up in your eyes.
And it just so happens that many of the same healthy habits that protect your eyes from disease also help shield your brain from neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's.
Natural anti-inflammatories like curcumin -- which is found in turmeric, a yellow spice used in ballpark mustard and Indian curries -- can reduce oxidative stress and damage in your retinas.
It can ALSO help snuff out the flames in your gray matter that have been linked to Parkinson's.
And since both Parkinson's and eye diseases like macular degeneration have been linked to high blood sugar, slashing sugar from your diet can protect both your brain and eye health.
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