As Chiropractors we love the nervous system! It is what we work with every single day. By adjusting the spine we remove interference from your nervous system which allows the brain and body to communicate to each other more effectively.
However, there are many other ways in which we can support the Nervous System and one of those ways is via the food we eat. Our food makes up the building blocks to every single cell within our body and therefore we should be building it up with good quality nutritious foods.
“Do you want a body built on McDonalds and coke or fruits and vegetables?”
Our nervous system requires particular nutrients to make sure it is able to function properly and efficiently. Without these nutrients the nervous system would fatigue easily and wouldn’t make the connections required. So if you are interested in making sure your nervous system is working as well as it can then try incorporating the following foods into your diet:
The dry weight of the brain is made up of around 60% fat and 1/5 of that is made from essential fatty acids. Being essential fatty acids means that we cannot make them in our body and need to get them from our diet. These essential fatty acids are omega-3 and omega-6. We get omega-3’s from oily fish, seeds and nuts and omega-6s from poultry, eggs, nuts and avocados. Most of us eat more omega-6s then omega-3s so incorporating more oily fish such as salmon, sardines, herring and mackerel is a great way to boost omega-3s.
Essential fatty acids also form the myelin sheath which is the protective barrier around our nerves. Not enough of these fatty acids leads to weaker myelin sheaths which means that our nerves are more susceptible to damage.
2. Green leafy vegetables
These vegetables are rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin B complex and magnesium which are all important for your nervous system. Vitamin C and vitamin E both have an anti-ageing effect on the nervous system. Magnesium helps calm the nervous system so is great for stressful periods! Vitamin B complex is essential in the creation and circulation of neurotransmitters which are the brains communication messengers. They regulate heartbeat, respiration and digestion. An important B vitamin that leafy green vegetables are high in is folate which is especially important for pregnant and breast-feeding mums.
3. Dark chocolate
I’m sorry to say but this does not include all dark chocolates. They type of chocolate that is good for your nervous system is unprocessed, raw and not full of sugar. You want to look for ones that are >70% cacao as this is the active ingredient that benefits your nervous system. Cacao contains L-tryptophan which is a neurotransmitter that helps calm the mind. It is also full of flavanols which have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. These help to lower blood pressure and improve the blood flow to both the brain and the heart.
Eggs are rich in choline and B vitamins. Choline is a nutrient that is used by the brain to make acetylcholine which is a neurotransmitter that is important for communication among brain cells as well as memory. Again, the quality of the egg is very important here so look for free range pastured eggs.
Almonds and cashews are rich in magnesium which as mention before helps to calm the nervous system. Brazil nuts are a rich source of selenium which also has a calming effect on your nervous system. Nuts also have good levels of protein which means they will keep you fuller for longer.
Pomegranate juice has high levels of anti-oxidants which help to prevent free radical damage to your brain cells. There are studies that suggest that pomegranate juice may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
So, try incorporating some of these into your diet and help support your nervous system.
For more help with your Nervous System contact Hawker Chiropractic in Belconnen Canberra. We assist you with symptoms such as back pain, neck pain and headache but at the bottom of every adjustment is us trying to assist your nervous system into being able to do what it does best!