(NaturalNews) The amount of chemicals and internal disturbances that are wreaking havoc on brain function are limitless. Whether it is fluoride, GMOs, heavy metals or severe intestinal issues, there is no shortage of things causing our noggin problems. Aside from cleaning up your lifestyle, here are four herbs that can crank up your brain function.
The Ginkgo biloba tree is one of the oldest trees in the world and is native to China. They reach up to 40 meters in height and have greenish-yellow fan-shaped leaves.
Many health practitioners have recognized this herb's results when it comes to improving memory and overall brain functions. The ginkgo leaves contain two chemicals, flavonoids and terpenoids, which act as important antioxidants that inhibit free radical damage to various areas of the body, including the brain. This is very important, as oxidative stress is a leading factor in the development of neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia and Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease.
The World Health Organization also reported that ginkgo can help individuals suffering from cerebrovascular insufficiency, which can be experienced as poor concentration and memory and headaches.
Be careful when choosing a Ginkgo biloba supplement, as those imported from China have been found to have high levels of toxic heavy metal lead.
Bacopa (also called Brahmi) is a perennial plant with white or blue flowers and grows throughout Southern Asia. It has been commonly cited as a nerve tonic in Ayurvedic medicine and has been traditionally used to enhance learning and memory through its neuroprotective and antioxidant properties.
The active constituents for cognitive function have been linked to saponin compounds called bacosides. They have been shown to improve neurotransmission among brain cells, repair damaged neurons and improve nerve synapse performance, as well as increase serotonin production.
Research trials have suggested that bacopa can help provide relief for memory recall, comprehension, anxiety, depression, insomnia and ADD.
Bacopa is not addictive and has no reported side effects after centuries of use in Ayurvedic medicine, and it is safe for anyone regardless of age and gender.
Known in Eastern medicine as the "mushroom of immortality" and "King of Herbs," reishi is a medicinal mushroom that grows in various regions of the world where damp and temperate conditions exist.
Reishi is known to have multiple benefits to the body, most notably immune, cardiovascular, adrenal, liver, nerve and mental function.
Reishi is a great herb for the brain due to its strong antibacterial and fungal qualities, which help clean up the digestive system and improve the health of the vagus nerve connection between the gut and the brain. It's becoming well known that a healthy gut goes a long way to creating a healthy brain.
Not only that, but this healing herb's adaptogenic qualities provide us with an incredible ability to handle stressful situations, which eases our anxiety and increases mental clarity.
There are a few ideas on what shilajit is, including one which states that it's the residue of plants which have been degraded by bacteria and fungi, and another that says it is the end result of rocks and soil being broken down by mosses and liverworts.
What we do know for sure is that this tar-like substance comes from cracks in rocks in high mountainous regions during hot weather, and the best shilajit comes from the Himalayas.
In addition to providing vitality and strength, and boosting immunity, this healing superfood is also rich in organic acids, which can increase metabolism and stamina as well as improve brain function, circulation and digestion. Not only that, but it has also been implicated in relief from depression and mental stress.
About the author: Derek Henry, B.Kin, is a highly revered holistic health coach and world renowned natural health blogger who created Healing the Body to help people understand the fundamental principles to exceptional health so they can overcome their own health challenges.
In this pursuit he created THRIVE, an 8 week online holistic lifestyle course based on the foundational structure that needs to be in place to create a healthy body and mind. It provides the specific knowledge, tools, strategies, and insights in a clear and concise format that allows you to clearly navigate your own healthy lifestyle, without all the confusion. It is the ultimate road map to healing the body. Check out this unique and exciting program, starting September 28th, 2014!