Cognitive health is one of the most important things to maintain as we age. With the rising number of individuals suffering from cognitive decline and dementia it is imperative to learn about the best cognitive health supplements. Most of us never think twice about supplementing for our brain health, taking the all too common stance of “it won’t happen to me”. A mind is a terrible thing to lose, with it we lose our identity and our freedom. Over one third of people will die suffering from a form of cognitive impairment, often Alzheimer’s Disease. Take your brains health into consideration today, before you become a statistic.
With the increasing frequency at which cognitive decline is affecting people in our modern world, it is helpful to understand what is causing this and the measures we can take to prevent it.
Understanding Cognitive Health
Twenty years ago if you asked what age you should be worried about developing Alzheimer’s Disease at, the answer would be around 65 years old. Ask that same question today and it will be closer to 40 years old.
Why are cases of cognitive decline popping up earlier than ever before?
Many factors are involved, mostly caused by our modern world. From processed foods, polluted soils and water, rising levels of toxins in products we use daily, air pollution, nutrient deficiencies and even taking certain medications, all playing a role in our impaired health and cognitive function.
It is impossible to avoid these completely, we can do everything possible to minimize our exposure to these harmful toxins, but when the air you breath and the water we drink is contributing to our ill health it makes it difficult. The common denominator among these health impairing factors is they all tax our body and deplete it of nutrients while filling it with toxins. Understanding this makes it much easier to treat the cause and prevent cognitive decline more effectively than ever.
By supplementing vital antioxidants and nutrients we can help remove these toxins from our body while fortifying the nutrients our body requires to function properly. Below are some of the best cognitive health supplements, but the benefits translate across the whole body. Making them extremely beneficial health supplements for anyone to be taking to not only prevent cognitive decline, but improve overall health and well-being.
Best Cognitive Health Supplements
Alpha Lipoic Acid for Cognitive Health
Whether supplemented alone or in combination with other antioxidants Alpha Lipoic Acid has been shown to improve memory and cognitive function.
Heavy Metal Chelation
Redox-active metal ions like iron and copper cause oxidative damage by catalyzing reactions that produce free radicals. Chelating these heavy metals is vital in order to prevent this damage. Preventing these metal ions from producing free radicals is a very beneficial treatment for neurodegenerative disease. Alpha Lipoic Acid is an effective way to chelate these heavy metals, inhibiting the oxidative damage caused by these iron and copper ions.
Antioxidant Synthesis (Glutathione)
Glutathione is commonly known as our body’s master antioxidant. Playing an important intracellular antioxidant role, detoxifying our cells and eliminating carcinogens and toxins. Our Glutathione levels begin to drop as we age, low levels of Glutathione contribute to sickness, disease and death. Found in every living cell on our planet, it is vital to maintain high levels of this antioxidant, especially as we age.
Alpha Lipoic Acid has been found to increase Glutathione levels in our cells. Increasing the expression of gamma-glutamylcysteine ligase (GCL) an enzyme that plays a role in the rate at which we synthesize glutathione. Increasing cellular cysteine which is an amino acid required to synthesize Glutathione endogenously.
ALA for Cognitive Health
Alpha Lipoic Acid is effective when dealing with cognitive decline, whether it is to slow the decline or to help treat it. Helping our cells utilize glucose efficiently and aiding the function and health of our entire neurological system.
Combine Alpha Lipoic Acid with Acetyl L-Carnitine for added benefits, these two supplements work remarkably well together, amplifying their individual benefits.
Acetyl L-Carnitine for Cognitive Health
This powerful antioxidant operates similarly to Alpha Lipoic Acid. Acetyl L-Carnitine is an antioxidant that free’s our body from harmful free radicals and promotes the production of Glutathione.
L-Carnitine is integrally involved in our cellular metabolic function. Helping to increase cellular energy production within the “power plant” of the cell, the mitochondria. Aiding in the metabolism of fat cells also, Acetyl L-Carnitine will ensure our cells receive adequate fats to function properly and break these fats down in order to produce energy. This has made it a very popular supplement for people trying to lose weight.
Cognitive Health Benefits of Acetyl L-Carnitine
Acetyl L-Carnitines effect on our central nervous system and cognitive function is the real emphasis here though. Which in part comes from its ability to enhance our cellular energy production, translating into healthy, properly functioning brain cells and nerve cells.
The piece that sets Acetyl L-Carnitine above the rest, is the fact that it is in its acetylated form. This allows it access to the nearly impermeable blood brain barrier. This selective barrier prevents many toxins from reaching the brain, it also prevents many antioxidants from reaching the brain cells as well. Because free radicals and heavy metals have no trouble infiltrating brain cells, it is vital to combat them with antioxidants that can reach these hard to access cells. Preventing the accumulation of toxins in the brain which would severely impair your cognitive function and manifest into cognitive impairment and potentially dementia.
N Acetylcysteine for Cognitive Health
Here is another extremely powerful antioxidant that helps our body produce Glutathione. Aiding in the production of our body’s master antioxidant is just the tip of the iceberg though, because N Acetylcysteine supplements have an extraordinary amount of benefits for our health.
Neuroprotective Benefits of NAC
N Acetylcysteine has many cognitive health benefits when supplemented regularly, it can help prevent damage caused by aluminum toxicity and even act as an antidepressant.
One study found that when rats were treated with N Acetylcysteine before being exposed to high levels of aluminum, they showed significantly less cognitive impairment than rats that were not treated with NAC. This shows that N Acetylcysteine is a powerful preventative against aluminum toxicity. Preventing the harmful build up in the brain and inhibiting cognitive impairment due to aluminum, including Alzheimer’s disease.
We encounter aluminum everyday, whether we use an antiperspirant deodorant or drink tap water, we are exposing ourselves to dangerous levels of this heavy metal everyday. Supplementing NAC can help prevent this hazardous metal from getting a foothold in our body and impair our cognitive function.
General Benefits of N Acetylcysteine
Clearing toxins from our body, detoxifying your liver and cleansing our blood; NAC is enormously beneficial to our overall health and well-being.
One of the more alluring benefits of supplementing with N Acetylcysteine is its ability to suppress the influenza virus. Inhibiting the replication of the virus within our body, reducing the amount of time that symptoms are felt and minimizing the severity of the symptoms altogether.
Vinpocetine for Cognitive Health
This is a relatively new supplement to the cognitive health market, derived from the periwinkle plant and used since 1978 to treat cerebral vascular diseases. Referred to as viagra for our brain, the name fits quite well.
Improved Blood Flow to the Brain
Vinpocetine improves the blood flow to the brain which enhances the delivery of oxygen, glucose for energy and nutrients to the brain. While many of our organs or tissues can withstand no oxygen for minutes at a time, the brain cannot. Any interruption in oxygen flow to the brain can result in immediate damage the brain cells.
Supplementing Vinpocetine for cognitive health will ensure blood is flowing to the brain, reaching the areas that need it most. Improving the brains function, energy production and nutrient balance.
Vinpocetine for Healing Damaged Brain Cells
When our brain cells are damaged they can harm other cells as well. Spreading oxidative stress throughout the brain and building up harmful sodium accumulation. Vinpocetine is a sodium channel blocker that can help protect the cells from this sodium build up. Contributing to the preservation of our brain cells ability to restructure and heal themselves. Especially beneficial after an injury to restore cognitive function rapidly.
Vinpocetine is a very promising supplement to improve cognitive health and help treat injuries or circulation problems related to the brain.
Vitamin B for Cognitive Health
Coming in many forms and names, Riboflavin, Pyridoxal Phosphate, Folic Acid, Methylcobalamin and many more. Vitamin B is a proven brain boosting supplement that should be a part of everyones health routine. Individuals with healthy levels of Vitamin B-12 for example, have less of a risk of developing a cognitive disorder like depression or dementia.
Brain Atrophy and Vitamin B
One study looked at a large sample size of individuals 70 years old and older with a mild cognitive impairment. A high dose regimen of Vitamins B6 and B12 for two years showed a significant reduction in the amount of brain shrinkage. These lower levels of brain atrophy among individuals who followed the regimen over the placebo group prove the immense benefit of Vitamin B for brain health.
Ample levels of folate and Vitamins B6 and B12 are essential to maintain healthy homocysteine levels. Homocysteine levels can be a major factor in the development of Alzheimer’s disease, selectively impairing the brain tissue and causing cognitive decline as you age. Supplementing B Vitamins can help ensure your homocysteine levels are balanced and your risk of Alzheimer’s is minimal.
Phosphatidylserine for Cognitive Health
This chemical is produced by the body and is found in the inner portion of our cells, found in high concentrations in our brain cells. This cognitive health supplement is one of the most well known because of the immense benefits it yields. Here is a quick rundown of the cognitive health benefits of phosphatidylserine.
- Restore your Memory
- Improve your Concentration
- Rejuvenate your Brain Cells
- Boost your Mood
- Stay Calm and Stress Free
- Improved Reflexes and Alertness
- Regulate Cortisol and Glucose Levels
- Improve Neurotransmitter Receptor Health
Improving the nervous systems ability to communicate intracellularly, balancing the complex brain chemistry to balance our mood and optimize cognitive function. Phosphatidylserine plays a key role in our cells function, in particular our brain cells function. This can help alleviate brain fog, concentration, memory and help with your stress response. Truly a remarkable cognitive health supplement.