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Feed Your Head!  Maintaining Brain Size and Function As We Age.
By: Dr. William Wong, ND, PhD.


Look at an MRI of an Alzheimers patient’s brain and what will you see?  You'll see a shrunken mass looking something like an over-cooked baked potato; dry looking with fissures and cracks, not at all like the image of the big juicy brain we know with it's swirls and convolutions.   What happened?  How did it get that way?  Is there any way to avoid or even reverse some of the damage? 

Alzheimers in a way is an accelerated and more serious form of the brain degeneration we'll all be subject to as we age.     Let me explain the physiological process.  From 27 onward our bodies begin the aging process.  In this process, various things happen to slowly limit the function of our internal organs not the least of which is that the organs themselves, including the brain, begin to be laced through with scar tissue (fibrosis) and shrink.    From 40-45 onward our brains not only shrink due to fibrosis but hormone changes (i.e. a drop in testosterone) also decrease the size of a portion of the brain known as the medical amygdala.  Cells in the substancia negra of the brain which controls our brains connection to the body, begin to die off and with it the production of dopamine, the chemical needed for the brain body connection, begins to wane.   If these cells die off too quickly or at too young an age that produces Parkinson's disease.  If they die off slowly, as is normal, we gradually become weaker and less precise in our movements over time and our libido is lacking or gone altogether.    Soy foods have been found to increase the brain shrinkage.  (See our article Soy The Poison Seed for references)

As the fibrosis laces itself spider web like into and across the mass of the brain, it restricts tissue, much as post operative scar tissue can restrict limb movement or the bowels.  This  growth of fibrosis also  clogs micro circulation and inhibits full blood flow as it does in the extremities most often seen with cold hands and feet and also seen in a more serious ways in Peripheral Vascular Disease and Diabetic Neuropathy. 

60 to 70% of the brain is made up of lipid's, fats.  When someone calls you a fat head they are actually paying you a complement.  All neuro transmitters are made of fats,  memories are fats connected to proteins to form what look like fields of microscopic trees.   When we begin to have failing memory it is because either we are low on the fats used to send signals from one end of the brain to another or there is a protein build up between the trees of the memory forest short circuiting the trees or insulating them rendering them incapable of  transmission.  This fact forms the theory of aging called Cross Linkage.  And the protein build up that forms between the memory trees is called polymerization.    

The most important and abundant of the fats used for neuro transmitters is acetyl choline.  As Acetyl choline levels drop we have trouble thinking, remembering and again connecting body to brain.  Most of the anti acid drugs work to suppress the formation of choline.  While this may shut down the stomach acid cycle, it also short circuits the secondary pathway for having erections and we don't yet know what the long term implications of consistently shutting down this choline pathway and choline production may be to the rest of the body.  Will it ultimately harm the brain?  We don't yet know. 

I've used the word “normal” a few times when referring to the degenerative changes the brain faces as we age.  While loss of function, size and ability are indeed normal, I am not implying that the changes are good, that we should accept them as being inevitable or that some of the degeneration can't be arrested or reversed.  Just because the body has been pre-programmed with planned obsolescence and “normally” sets us up to wither and die, does not mean we have to accept the dysfunction or the proposed date of death!  

What can we do to counter the degenerative changes, arrest the changes currently in progress, and maintain or improve our levels of both mental functioning and the brains connection to the body?

First and Foremost: Get rid of the restrictive fibrosis and cross linking polymerization.   Senior patients given HGH injections were measured for it's effectiveness in two ways 1) the blood levels of IGF 1, which HGH makes, were tested to see if they were higher, 2) imaging was done of the brain and internal organs before and after to check for growth.  With consistently higher IGF 1 levels, the organs and brain increased in size, which is good, but they never regained their original adult size.   The reason? Restrictive fibrosis.  It is my postulation that if highly fibrinolytic (scar tissue / fibrosis eating) systemic enzymes were included into the mix that they would eat away at the restrictive fibrosis allowing for greater growth of the brain and viscera.

Now the question will arise as to the absorption of enzymes in the first place and then their being able to cross the brain body barrier in the second place.  There are over 200 peer reviewed studies proving the absorption and therapeutic action of orally administered systemic enzymes.  A search on Pub Med using any of these key words will prove the point: papain, bromelain, trypsin, chymotrypsin, nattokinase, serrapeptase, systemic enzyme.   You'll be buried in studies.

Their therapeutic action is not in question either as 5 decades of medical use in Germany and Central Europe and Japan have more than shown their worth.  As to the question of crossing the brain body barrier, two cases of the enzymes lysing away inoperable brain tumors and one case of it reducing spinal stenosis more than show that despite their large size the enzymes do indeed cross over into the CNS (central nervous system). 

So if we use the enzymes to both eat away at the restrictive fibrosis that grows through the brain and dissolve away the polymerization that shorts out memory and thinking we've gone a long way towards improving brain function.  If we also add that the enzymes have shown themselves excellent at lysing away at arterial plaque slowly and safely, opening circulation in general even in the arteries that feed the brain then we see that there are added advantages to systemic enzyme use.  Current studies are in the works to demonstrate scientifically what we've seen clinically: Systemic enzymes open blood flow in the micro and macro circulation, even in cases of Diabetic Neuropathy and Peripheral Vascular Disease, with out danger of creating clots (embolites).  In fact the enzymes have been approved in the European Union to prevent blood cots.

Between getting rid of restrictive fibrosis, cross linking proteins and opening circulation we've done a great deal in improving brain function, now let's get on to feeding the brain what it needs to function. Let's help the brain to grow.

IGF 1 is the reason the brain and our internal organs grew in the first place.  As we age our pituitaries output of IGF 1 drops.  If we increase our IGF 1 levels to those we had in our teens then the internal organs will respond and grow.  Many folks spend tens of thousands of dollars yearly for Human Growth Hormone injections to increase their output of IGF 1.  If you can afford it fine, but that's the long way around the barn.  IGF 1 is available from both Colostrum and Deer Antler Velvet at extremely reasonable prices.  The sublingual spray of the IGF 1 is very effective.  3 squirts under the tongue, hold for a minute then swallow - 3 times a day.

With the colostrum it takes a good bit more and it also takes a bit longer for it to work  but it will still work.  Most folks feel the positive effects of the sublingual spray in a matter of days or short weeks.  If the medical studies were right, the organs will take several months to a year or so to grow so be consistent with the IGF 1 and use it forever.

Now for enhancing the neurotransmitters: these are easy, let's start first with choline.  This wonderful member of the B vitamin family is found in high levels in products like egg lecithin powder.  The egg lecithin is rich not only in choline but it's also a source of other good phospho lipids the brain needs to create neuro transmitters.   Soy lecithin is more plentiful and easily available and rich with neurotransmitters but the dichotomy is that the Hawaii Men's Health Study found that soy causes brain shrinkage. While the culprit isoflavones (estrogen) in soy is found in tiny amounts in the soy lecithin why bother with the problem at all when egg lecithin is available with all of it's brain nutritive functions minus the damage the soy based products cause. *** Note: Real Egg Lecithin is not currently available.

Speaking of phosphates, how many folks remember their mothers (especially Latin mothers) making fish head soup and telling the children, who were turning up their noses against eating it, that the stuff was brain food?  Your mother was right!  In all the huff and hustle to find nutrients and drugs that improve brain power we've forgotten one of the most important brain nutrients Phosphorous!   Certain other Latin’s have not forgotten the importance of phosphorus to the human brain and they have developed a supplement known as Sukrol to feed the growing brains of children needing phosphorus and B complex vitamins.  This supplement is made in Guatemala but available at Wal-Mart in the vitamin section.  What's good for building kiddy brains is also good for renewing adult ones as well.

Looking at a comprehensive program if all the above it looks like this:

  1. Systemic Enzymes: 1 to 3 caplets a day.
  2. IGF 1 sublingual spray, 3 squirts 3 times a day.
  3. Balanced B Complex 100's, one capsule per day.
  4. Eat 2 to 3 eggs every day or every other day for the lecithin.
  5. Sukrol: 1 tablespoon twice per day.

If we maintain our brain size, fight the tendency of our neurological circuits to short out, maintain full circulation to the brain and feed it the things needed for thought and nerve transmission then we should have full and sharp use of our brains for life.  A long productive and happy one!

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