Quercetin, an isoflavone with a multitude of health improving properties, has been shown to protect your brain from some of the causes of chronic neural degeneration, called neural protection. This neuroprotection includes boosting the health of your arteries that feed the brain, enhancing mitochondrial functions to maintain good energy production to the brain, reduction in ROS, and anti-inflammatory properties,
Quercetin is found in many foods including apples and onions. However, most people don’t ingest enough quercetin to give themselves the power of quercetin to improve their brain health. Thus, supplementation is recommended. With adequate levels of quercetin in your blood, you may be able to protect your brain from chronic damage that could lead to chronic medical diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and other degenerative brain diseases you might get as you get older.
Feed Your Brain the Right Stuff
Arterial health is probably one of the most important things you can do to keep your brain healthiest. Poor arterial health, formation of cholesterol plaques with the arteries (atherosclerosis), development of inflammation within the endothelium, scarring, and hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis), is associated with brain health. Heart disease is associated with brain disease. After all, if you improve the flow of blood to the brain you get better brain function.
Prevention thus first starts with ensuring a healthy heart. This includes making sure you are eating the right diet, such as a Keto-Mediterranean Diet. Exercising improves circulation to all body parts, including your brain, and exercising around 20 minutes a day is probably the most important thing you can do for your brain. Reducing stress and getting enough sleep are important too. Another beneficial action you can do is to make sure you ingest adequate amounts of quercetin.
How Alzheimer’s Disease Develops
There are many theories regarding how chronic degeneration of the brain occurs resulting in Alzheimer’s disease (AD), or Parkinson’s disease (PD), or other degenerative diseases. With AD, the process starts in your 40’s to 60’s, twenty years before you see the actual symptoms of AD. Most experts have concluded that AD starts with oxidative stress to the cells, particularly to the mitochondria of each cell. This mitochondrial damage triggers and immune response from the immune cells near the brain cells (called microglia) and when this response is severe, inflammation occurs. Inflammation then causes destruction of neural cells, forming inflammatory tangles, and deposition of beta-amyloid on the nerve cells. When this progresses to a severe state over many years, Alzheimer’s disease is diagnosed. Preventing these from happening years before AD develops is key to prevention of AD.
Reduce Oxidative Stress to the Brain
The neuroprotective effects of Quercetin begins with reducing ROS. Constant excitatory electrical stimulation of the nerves cells through normal thought processes is considered to be the cause of oxidative stress (ROS) to the brain’s mitochondria, the powerhouses of neural cells, their mitochondria.
Quercetin protects brain cells from the oxidative damage seen by the repeated excitatory electrical impulses and thus oxidative damage to the mitochondria of the nerve cells. It increases expression of a natural cellular defense against such mitochondrial damage called the Nrf2 system, which help prevent brain cell death. In addition, quercetin’s anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory actions reduce toxicity of the dangerous and abnormal beta-amyloid proteins onto the nerve cell walls, which are thought to produce the symptoms of memory loss and dementia.
Moreover the damage to the nerves through these processes results in destruction of the brain structure seem in dementia diseases such as AD and Parkinson’s disease. Quercetin has been found to prevent brain cell death in animal models of Parkinson’s disease. It preserves vital brain cell function and limits brain cell death that would otherwise produce neurodegenerative diseases.
Increase in Mitochondria in Brain Cells
Studies also demonstrated increased formation of mitochondria in brain cells with administration of quercetin in animal studies. An increase in brain mitochondria increases energy to the brain cells with accompanying increase if brain function. Along with a decrease in ROS, this could confer protective effects of the brain from developing Alzheimer’s disease and other chronic neurodegenerative diseases, of which mitochondrial dysfunction are hallmarks.
Quercetin can help protect the brain from developing Alzheimer’s disease. It does this through many pathways, including decreasing ROS damage to mitochondria, increasing the number of mitochondria, and decreasing inflammation. Start early and make sure you are getting adequate amounts of quercetin, either through your diet or by taking supplements.
 Sabia, S, et al. Association of ideal cardiovascular health at age 50 with incidence of dementia: 25-year follow-up of Whitehall II cohort study. BMJ 2019; 366 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l4414
 Dorszewska J. Cell biology of normal brain aging: synaptic plasticity-cell death. Aging Clin Exp Res. 2013 Apr;25(1):25-34. doi.org/10.1007/s40520-013-0004-2
 Silva, B., Oliveira, P.J., Dias, A. et al. Quercetin, kaempferol and biapigenin fromhypericum perforatum are neuroprotective against excitotoxic insults. neurotox res 13, 265–279 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03033510
 Arredondo F, Echeverry C, Abin-Carriquiry JA, et al. After cellular internalization, quercetin causes Nrf2 nuclear translocation, increases glutathione levels, and prevents neuronal death against an oxidative insult. Free Radic Biol Med. 2010 Sep 1;49(5):738-47. doi.org/10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2010.05.020
 Shi C, Zhao L, Zhu B, et al. Protective effects of Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb761) and its constituents quercetin and ginkgolide B against beta-amyloid peptide-induced toxicity in SH-SY5Y cells. Chem Biol Interact. 2009 Sep 14;181(1):115-23. doi.org/10.1016/j.cbi.2009.05.010
 Week GL, McGann-Gramling K, Hauss-Wegrzyniak B, et al. Attenuation of chronic neuroinflammation by a nitric oxide-releasing derivative of the antioxidant ferulic acid. J Neurochem. 2004 Apr;89(2):484-93.
 Karuppagounder SS, Madathil SK, Pandey M, Haobam R, Rajamma U, Mohanakumar KP. Quercetin up-regulates mitochondrial complex-I activity to protect against programmed cell death in rotenone model of Parkinson’s disease in rats. Neuroscience. 2013 Apr 16;236:136-48.
 Bournival J, Plouffe M, Renaud J, Provencher C, Martinoli MG. Quercetin and sesamin protect dopaminergic cells from MPP+-induced neuroinflammation in a microglial (N9)-neuronal (PC12) coculture system. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2012;2012:921941.
 Op cit. Davis, m, et al. doi.org/10.1152/ajpregu.90925.2008
Answer is an astounding : YES, Omegas are very good for the Brain!
Did you know that your brain is primarily made up of lipids? One of the best lipids, or fatty substances, are omega 3 free fatty acids, also known as omega 3’s. The mechanism by which these improve brain health is complex, but the conclusion is that the more omega 3 concentration in your brain, the less brain aging. (more…)
DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is the mother of all hormones. In other words, the body produces DHEA (from cholesterol, by the way) and the from DHEA it produces the sex hormones of estradiol, progesterone, and testosterone; plus the mineralocorticol steroids of glucocorticosterol and mineralocorticosterol.
Anti-aging experts have always recommended high levels of DHEA should be present in the blood for multiple reasons. DHEA can act on a lot of different pathways in the body to make it healthier. But let’s just look at cardiovascular disease and DHEA levels, and death rates to make things simple.
A study performed in Sweden in in 2010 put the importance of having high DHEA levels for prevention of cardiovascular disease and all-cause of death into perspective. They evaluated 2644 elderly men, ages 69 to 81 years in Sweden. They wanted to see if the age-related decline in DHEA levels was really important for general and vascular aging and was there an association between the two.
After a mean follow-up of 4.5 years, they saw 328 deaths. They split the men up into 4 groups according to the range of their DHEA levels, called quartiles. Those who had the lowest DHEA levels were in the 1st quartile, and the levels increased for 2nd ,3rd , and 4th quartiles.
The results were quite remarkable. Those who had the lowest levels of DHEA had shorter survival: they had a 54% increase in all-cause of death (mortality), a 61% increase in deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD), and a 67% increase in deaths due to ischemic heart disease.
This correlation was even more important when they compared the mortality of the younger men versus the older men. The mortality prediction among older men was 30% increased mortality if the DHEA levels were low. But in the younger men, the prediction of death was 264% greater in the 1st quartile compared to the other quartiles. (more…)
Anemia simply means lack of blood. This is the most common blood disorder.
The lack of blood or anemia may be various types, some very common types are given below:
- Decreased number of RBC (red blood cells) due to some disease like malaria.
- Blood loss due to some injury or ulcer.
- Insufficient production of RBC
- Malformation of RBC like Sickle Cell anaemia
- Lower level of haemoglobin
- Decreased folic acid and B12
RBC carries an iron containing red colored Metalloprotein called Hemoglobin (abbreviated Hb or Hgb), which is the carrier of oxygen in human body.
Hemoglobin carries oxygenated blood from lungs to tissues, where various metabolic functions take place in the presence of oxygen. The resultant carbon dioxide is carried by Hemoglobin and brought back to lungs. Hemoglobin has an oxygen binding capacity of 1.34 mL O2 per gram.
Anemia results in hypoxia. Oxygen is essential for survival so lack of oxygen causes wide range of consequences.
Among all types iron deficiency anemia is the most common.
The main causes of Iron deficiency anemia are as follows:-
The body is losing more blood than it can produce. It may happen for various reasons like woman having heavy, long and frequent menstruation cycle, some injuries causing heavy bleeding, cancer or ulcer in oesophagus, stomach or colon or any kind of Gastrointestinal bleeding.
Eating diets, that don’t have sufficient iron content. This may happen in case of strict vegetarians. Children and Infants also need iron rich diet for proper growth and development. Meat, eggs and leafy green vegetables are very good source of iron.
Body not absorbing iron properly due to Celiac disease or Crohn’s disease, which affects the intestine’s ability to absorb nutrients from digested food.
In case of pregnancy body needs more iron due to the increased blood volume and for the development of the foetus.
The common symptoms of iron deficiency anemia are as follows:
- Overall fatigue or weak nests due to the lack of proper oxygen supply.
- Hair loss
- Pale yellow skin
- Inflammation in tongue
- Pica or craving for non edible things like dirt
The primary test of iron deficiency Anemia is Complete Blood Count or CBC. This test is performed to check the number of red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets and some other abnormality in blood, including Hemoglobin and Hematocrit levels in blood. The normal range of Hemoglobin is 13-17 per deciliter (dL) of blood in case of male and 12-15 per deciliter (dL) of blood in case of female.
Hematocrit is the percentage of blood volume made up by red blood cells. Normal levels of hermatocrit are generally between 38.8 to 50 percent for men and 34.9 and 44.5 percent for women. CBC also measures the mean corpuscular volume or MCV. MCV is a measure of the average size of RBC. In case of Iron deficiency, red blood cells are smaller than normal.
After the confirmation of anemia from CBC, further tests are performed like Reticulocyte count, Peripheral smear, tests to measure iron levels, Thyroid tests and test to detect Gastrointestinal Blood Loss.
Source of iron :
- Liver of chicken, turkey, pork, lamb, beef,
- Lean red meat like beef and lamb
- Beans and lentils
Majority of the woman suffers from iron deficiency Anemia worldwide. Woman of child bearing age is more prone to this kind of Anemia due to blood loss during menstruation cycle or pregnancy. Other factors like socioeconomic conditions may also the enhance this condition.
In general the women having heavy, long and frequent menstruation cycle suffer from chronic iron deficiency Anemia. They should take iron fortified diets or external iron supplements.
Generally most of the women suffer from anemia in the time of pregnancy. The body needs 50% more hemoglobin in this time.
The blood volume is increased in pregnant woman causing the decrease of blood hemoglobin level and also the reduction of concentration of red blood cells . The fetus is developed and nourished in mother’s blood, so maintaining proper hemoglobin level is very important for the development of the fetus.
The condition gets worse if the mother vomit frequently due to morning sickness throughout pregnancy. It is observed that maternal and fetal mortality rate is higher in anemic mother. The pregnant woman should eat iron rich diets to prevent anemia. But in most of the cases external iron supplements are needed to meet the required hemoglobin level. The prescribed amounts of external iron supplements. depends on the severity of the anemia.
It should be noted that Anemia in the time of pregnancy may also developed due to the deficiency of Folic acid and Vitamin B12.