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Scientists are learning more and more about dementia every day. And one of the most groundbreaking things they’ve learned in recent years is that your brain drains waste through something called the glymphatic system.
Your glymphatic system is similar to your lymphatic system. It’s a collection of vessels that carry fluid to your brain. This fluid picks up waste to transport out of your brain.
If your glymphatic system is sluggish and not draining waste properly, toxic proteins build up in the brain and turn into a sticky plaque that’s been linked to dementia.
How can you keep your glymphatic system from getting sluggish?
Well, that’s a great question with an exciting answer. A recent study identified three easy-peasy ways to keep your brain draining those dementia-causing waste efficiently…
The simplest ways to keep your brain clean
According to a study from researchers at University College London, you can keep your brain free from the toxic proteins that cause dementia by:
- Sleeping more. Researchers in this study (and many others) found that sleep stimulates the glymphatic system. Even better, the glymphatic fluid gets deeper into the brain during sleep. Think of it like giving your brain a deep scrub as opposed to a surface dusting. If you really want to give your glymphatic system a helping hand, another recent study showed you should sleep on your side.
- Exercising. Researchers also found that increasing your heart rate increases the efficiency of your glymphatic system. That explains why soooo many other studies found that exercising improves brain health and decreases your risk of dementia.
- Drinking a bit of alcohol. This one’s the most surprising. Researchers found that alcohol can encourage your brain to clean house too. Although, I guess it’s not all that surprising…other studies have shown alcohol has a beneficial effect on the brain. In fact, a study conducted earlier this year found that moderate alcohol consumption causes more of the glymphatic system’s cerebral spinal fluid to flow through the brain. But if you like to drink, don’t get too excited. In this most recent study, researchers recommended drinking about 25 ml of wine per day. That’s less than an ounce. They also warned that if you drink too much it will have the opposite effect on your brain.
Prepare your brain for a healthy future
So, there you have it… three simple habits that keep your brain clean and (hopefully) dementia-free. Take some time to today to get your heart pumping, enjoy a swig of wine (but only one) and unwind for a restful and full night’s sleep. Then continue to practice these habits daily. In a world where dementia rates are on the rise, it’s the least you can do to protect your greatest asset — your brain.
But in addition to healthier habits that help keep your glymphatic systems doing its job, detoxing or trying chelation shouldn’t be off the table. That’s because there is only so much you can do avoid toxins, especially heavy metals. Take lead — its still a problem in many U.S. cities, and water isn’t the only source.
According to Dr. Isaac Eliaz, although the blood-brain barrier provides some protection against harmful substances, many dangerous compounds and heavy metals can breach this barrier and enter the brain.
Have you had an MRI recently? Or a few over the years? Gadolinium is a metallic element with magnetic properties. It is injected into about one-third of patients getting an MRI, in order to enhance imaging. If your doctor has ever ordered an MRI with “contrast” for you, you were exposed to gadolinium.
You may have read about the experiences of the wife of famous actor Chuck Norris. Her gadolinium levels were off the charts. She suffered with symptoms of what we now know as gadolinium deposition disease. And sadly, her cognitive abilities declined.
Your brain faces assaults from anything that comes into your body, but being aware and taking steps to protect it can help you keep a well-functioning brain.
Editor’s note: Have you heard of EDTA chelation therapy? It was developed originally to remove lead and other contaminants, including heavy metals, from the body. Its uses now run the gamut from varicose veins to circulation. Click here to discover Chelation: Natural Miracle for Protecting Your Heart and Enhancing Your Health!
- More sleep and a drop of wine can help prevent dementia, researchers find — The Telegraph. Retrieved June 12, 2018.
- Scientists discover previously unknown cleaning system in brain — MedicalXpress. Retrieved June 12, 2018.
- Alzheimer’s Is Accelerating Across the U.S. — AARP. Retrieved June 12, 2018.