By Jing Struve
CEO & Executive Director of Farlong Pharmaceutical
The month of June is recognized as Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month and its purpose is to bring awareness to the disease and overall brain health. Across the world, there are approximately 46.8 million people living with Alzheimer’s disease or a various form of dementia. In the U.S. alone, it’s estimated that 1.2 million people 18 years and older are diagnosed annually with adult onset brain disease or a disorder.
Studies have shown that your memory can start to decline as early in life as your thirties, even in healthy individuals. When people reach the age of 60, it’s possible for the brain to start showing signs of physically shrinking and for individuals 80 years of age, one in six people will display signs of dementia. It’s important to support the health of your brain and take preventative measures to help reduce the risk of developing dementia, age-related cognitive decline, Alzheimer's disease and more.
One way to naturally support your brain’s health is with Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), which is based on more than 3,500 years of ancient Oriental medicinal practices and natural therapies, including herbal ingredients and extracts. A few of the all-natural supplements that can help your cognitive health include Lifeflower Breviscapine, Panax Notoginseng and Astaxanthin.
Lifeflower Breviscapine (Erigeron Breviscapus extract) is a compound containing more than 90% scutellarin that is widely recognized for helping support healthy brain and blood circulation, age-related mild memory loss, and brain clarity and focus. It’s a powerful antioxidant with anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits. By promoting healthy brain blood circulation, the extract helps the brain function at its best, including the prefrontal cortex, which controls functions such as learning and memory. Several studies have proven that scutellarin has vasodilative, anti-thrombotic, anti-coagulative, and platelet-aggregating properties, which provides potential benefits against diseases and conditions affecting the brain such as Alzheimer's disease.
Panax notoginseng is one of the most widely used and studied herbal ingredients. The root is used for a wide variety of health benefits, including cardiovascular and neuromuscular benefits. Studies show that panax notoginseng can protect the brain from damage made by oxidative stress in neurological illnesses, and the root is proven to have anti-aging effects on the brain as the main ingredients help prevent cell senescence-associated diseases. Along with reducing, relieving and slowing the signs of aging, notoginseng offers protection from cognitive dysfunctions related to neurodegeneration, such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease.
Astaxanthin is known as one of the most potent antioxidants that can minimize and delay the progression of damage to the brain, as well as reduce and slow the physical impacts of aging. Proven by numerous studies, Astaxanthin has the potential to slow down brain aging by “increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels in the brain, attenuating oxidative damage to lipids, protein, and DNA and protecting mitochondrial functions.” Astaxanthin protects the human brain because its chemical structure allows it to easily cross the blood-brain barrier and protect the brain from poisons and irritations like aluminum (a central nervous system toxin linked to the development of Alzheimer’s disease), tobacco smoke, chemotherapy medication and other toxic substances.
Adding natural and powerful extracts and antioxidants to your diet and overall health regimen through supplements can help maintain good brain health and promote positive cognitive functioning. Just like brushing your teeth daily to prevent cavities and decay, it’s important to take the necessary measures to maintain optimal brain function and prevent future cognitive decline.
About the Author:
Jing Struve has over 16 years’ experience in the healthcare industry and is the executive director at Farlong Pharmaceutical. Inspired by the healing power of ancient Oriental remedies, Jing is passionate about applying these techniques in concert with modern technology to assist people in living healthier and better lives. Since 1998, her company has developed a line of natural, GRAS and scientifically proven functional products that promote a healthy life from seed to shelf, beginning at their GAP farm located in Yunnan Province, China. Jing studied Traditional Chinese Medicine with the Beijing University of Chinese Medicine and is currently enrolled in The Master of Science in Oriental Medicine PhD program at Alhambra Medical University.