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A Monthly Newsletter Understanding How The Brain Develops

Brain Integration Exercises

Interesting Facts About The Brain

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Improve Your Brain

10 Most Interesting Facts

Sharpen Your Brain With 5 Simple Exercises

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UNDERSTANDING HOW THE BRAIN DEVELOPS The

brain is comprised of many regions that perform specific functions, such as identifying what we see, processing spoken language, or assessing whether we are in danger. Within each of these brain areas are millions of neurons, or nerve cells, which send messages to each other across synapses. These trillions of nerves and synapses and the pathways they form make up the "wiring" of the brain; they allow all of the various areas to communicate and function together in a coordinated way. The number and organization of connections in the brain influence everything from the ability to recognize letters of the alphabet to Starlight Brain Integration, llc

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Issue No 5 - February 2013

“I think, therefore I am.” René Descartes, 17th-century philosopher

USE IT OR LOSE IT!!! Pruning allows the brain to keep the connections that have a purpose, while eliminating those that aren’t doing anything. In short, pruning increases the efficiency with which the brain can do what it needs to do. But, because the brain operates on the "use it or lose it" rule, an "over-pruning" of these connections can occur when a child is deprived of normally expected experiences in the early years. facility at managing complex social This happens throughout life. relationships. However, in early childhood the In most regions of the brain, no new brain is genetically programmed to neurons are formed after birth. produce more synapses than it will Instead, brain development consists ultimately use. This blooming of of an ongoing process of wiring and synapses happens at different times re-wiring the connections among in different areas of the brain. neurons. New synapses between cells Development then proceeds by are constantly being formed, while keeping the synapses that are used others are broken or pruned away. and pruning away those that aren’t. 1


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BRAIN INTEGRATION EXERCISES Enhancing mental function is possible at any age due to the malleable capabilities of the human brain. Mental and physical exercise can stimulate the growth of new branches between brain cells, a process called neuroplasticity. According to behavioral neuroscientist Edward Taub, Ph.D., at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, the claim that we use only 10 percent of our brain is incorrect. In fact, the brain has tremendous plasticity and 100 percent is utilized. Certain exercise can make the brain more ambidextrous.

Cross-Lateral Movements Lift your right knee and touch it with your left elbow and repeat five times, then reverse and do the same with the opposite elbow and knee. Moving opposite limbs across the body requires the left and r i g h t hemispheres of the brain to work together, according to educator and author Jean Feldman Ph.D. Do the windmill for another brain integrating exercise. Stand with your feet a comfortable distance apart, then bend over and touch your right foot with the left hand, stand and switch sides. Starlight Brain Integration, llc

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the brain, without the use of medication. This can typically be According to Lawrence Katz, accomplished in eight to 12 hours. Ph.D. and Manning Rubin, authors of "Keep Your Brain Transendental Meditation Alive," exercises or activities that Technique engage multiple senses among sight, smell, touch, hearing and Think relaxation and increased taste have a cognitive function verses religion n e u r o b i c or philosophy when considering e f f e c t , the transcendental meditation stimulating technique, known as TM. When new neural practiced for minutes a c t i v i t y 20 throughout the brain. Learn to each day, this of play the piano for a multi-sensory f o r m experience, or try cooking a new quieting the dish from a different culture while mind does not listening to new music from that require concentration, but may same culture. Use your enhance cognitive function in the imagination to find novel ways to brain through a state of restful cross-stimulate your senses and alertness, according to a study published by Arizona State enhance your brain activity. University in the volume 10, 2008 Brain Integration Technique edition of its journal Current Issues in Education. The article Consider trying the Brain cites the TM technique as capable Integration Technique, or BIT, to of activating the frontal and overcome learning challenges parietal regions of the brain which related to Attention Deficit are responsible for attention, Syndrome, or ADD, dyslexia and executive function, and emotional lack of coordination among others. stability, in effect integrating the Physiologist Susan McCrossin, brain in ways that may enhance an founder of BIT, says in an October individual's ability to tap into 18, 2004 article in the online working memory and other magazine Healthwell that functions of the brain's so-called executive control area. combining kinesiology and acupressure can facilitate the Change occurs when one integration of critical connections becomes what one is, not when that unite the right and left one tries to become what one is hemispheres of the brain. BIT uses not."Â gentle and relaxing methods to ~ Arnold R. Beisser ~ assist the brain in developing new neural pathways at a deep level in

Cross-Stimulate Senses

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Interesting Facts About The Brain Given below is a list of facts which you must have never heard before. Even though our brain is full of nerve cells, it doesn't have any pain receptors. This invariably means that we won't feel any pain even when the doctor is operating our brain while we are wide awake. Our brain is divided into two parts - the right hemisphere and left hemisphere. Interestingly, the right hemisphere controls the left part of the body while the left hemisphere controls the right part. The slowest speed at which information travels between the neurons in our brain is 260mph. Did you know that the human brain processes as many as 70,000 thoughts, on an average, per day. Here is a compilation of some interesting facts about our brain which will make you realize how powerful it actually is.

Yet another amazing attribute of our brain is the fact that around 1000ml of blood flows through it every single minute. When we cross the age of 30, our brain starts shrinking at a rate of 0.25 percent with every passing year. When we are fully awake, our brain generates around 23 watts of power, which is enough to power a light bulb. Our brain can carry on for 4 - 6 minutes after the oxygen supply to it is cut, and then it starts dying. Even though half of the neurons in the brain reside in cerebellum, the cerebellum occupies a mere 10 percent of the total size of our brain. Our brain absorbs around 46 cubic centimeters of oxygen from the body, of which only 6 percent is absorbed by the white matter, while the remaining 94 percent is absorbed by gray matter. Even though Albert Einstein is considered to be the smartest human being on the planet, his brain weighing 1,230 grams was slightly smaller than the average human brain.

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5 Simple Brain Exercises Switch Hands So, a really easy thing to do is to try one of your daily activities - brushing your teeth or dialing a phone number -- with your non-dominant hand. What that does, is strengthen those pathways and connections in the opposite side of your brain.

Conventional wisdom assumed losing your mental edge was just part of aging, but that may be incorrect. Scientists believe working out your brain -- just like you would your body to keep in shape -- could ward off the dulling of mental faculties and strengthen connections between newly-generated brain cells, which people make throughout life. Use it or lose it. Neurobics may help maintain your mental reserves and ensure you'll keep your mental edge clear into your elderly years. It's like

cross training, and researchers have found it's never too late to start, even in people who have some degree of dementia. "Good Morning America" medical contributor Dr. Marie Savard breaks down the things you can do to keep your mind in tip-top shape, and what bad habits may harm you. The premise of these brain aerobics or neurobics is to do familiar things, but do them slightly differently.

How frequently must you do your neurobics? We used to say it takes 21 tries to learn a new habit. But brain exercise is something you should be doing constantly throughout the day. Try to integrate it into all of your daily activities. A lifelong habit of challenging the brain gives you a greater reserve of mind muscle to use. Think of it as your retirement account. Add to your 401k of the brain so you have more to draw from when you need it.

Starlight Brain Integration, llc

Close Your Eyes Try a safe activity, like eating or showering, with your eyes closed. That forces you to use and strengthen your other senses. Most of what your brain does is process what your senses are bringing in. So, closing your eyes forces the brain to process that information in new ways.

Play Games Games help you strategize, but the brain is particularly stimulated by multi-tasking. Play games with other people that require you to strategize and interact socially at the same time.

Don’t Get Repetitive Introducing novelty is crucial. Your brain doesn't need anything complicated; just something new. Take a new way to work, or sit in a different seat. It forces you to look at the world from a new perspective.

Watch What You Consume You want to make sure to consume brain-boosting foods. Try antioxidants in food, such as berries and leafy greens. You also want to consume fish oils, which also come in supplements.

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February 2013  

Brain Development

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