Can Brain Games Improve Your Cognition?

By Julia Reedy & Catherine Roy Nov 08, 2017

There’s no doubt that we’re living through a technological revolution. And with the internet always at our fingertips, it seems like sheer brainpower is becoming obsolete. But whether we like it or not, our mental capacity follows the law of ‘use it or lose it;’ if we lean too heavily on technology as an external hard drive, we become more vulnerable to age-related cognitive decline.

The good news? It’s never too early to start protecting your brain! And now, there's no need to wonder any longer if those Sunday Paper brain games like Sudoku are imparting real cognitive benefits. Or better yet, if literal “brain food” actually exists. We’ve done all of the research. So without further ado, here’s some truly brain-boosting information you should know.

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Here's How Birth Control Can Affect Your Biomarkers

By Ashley Reaver, MS, RD, CSSD Jul 20, 2017

We're often asked if hormonal contraceptives can affect female biomarkers. The answer? Yes. It makes sense then, that women begin to wonder how they are affected, and to what extent.

Like any other medication, hormonal contraceptives (pills, patches, rings, IUDs, implants, and injections) interfere with the normal functioning of the body. Naturally, there can be some unintended residual effects. Therefore, some out-of-range biomarkers may be attributed to your contraceptive use, while others may be a combination of factors. It's important to note that throughout this blog post, we will refer to all hormonal contraceptives (pills, patches, rings, IUDs, implants, and injections), as OC – aka oral contraceptives. This may seem a misnomer, but in the current scientific literature, "OC" is used to characterize all hormonal contraceptives, unless indicated otherwise. We hope this post will help you better understand how your OC could be affecting some of your biomarker levels.

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Folate: A Key Ingredient to Problem-Free Pregnancy

By Bronwyn Long May 05, 2015

You know poor diet hurts your health, but did you know it can put your future child at risk before you even conceive? 

Roughly one in every 33 infants is born with a defect in the United States (10). Poor nutrition is one of multiple causes for pregnancy complications. In particular, women need higher levels of a vitamin called folate before conception to deliver a healthy baby, but the body cannot produce folate on its own; we only get it from eating certain foods. For this reason, some foods are fortified with a form of folate called folic acid, but is eating a bowl of O's going to cut it?

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Boost Your Brain Power with Science by Monitoring Your Blood Biomarkers

By Perrin Braun Mar 26, 2014

 

We all know that you have to train hard in order to take your physical performance to the next level. But the mental aspect of physical activity is just as important as keeping your body strong and fit. Good thinking skills are beneficial to everyone because making sound judgments can have a profound effect on maximizing your physical skills. Conversely, if you’re tired and unfocused, it can be difficult to make the right moves (both in sports and in life!). Fortunately, there are plenty of simple ways to improve your cognitive function, but you need to find out what’s going on inside of your body first. Blood analysis provides a unique window, as biomarkers are a great evaluation metric. Read on to learn about some of the most relevant biomarkers for your brain health.

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What Supplements Do You Need?

By Perrin Braun Oct 24, 2012

 

Do you take a vitamin or mineral supplement? Are you getting enough nutrients and should you worry about certain deficiencies? Or are you taking too many vitamins? Deciding whether to take a supplement and which one to take is tough because there are so many different types dietary supplements out there that it can be difficult to distinguish between misinformation and scientific advice. 

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Folic Acid: Too Much of a Good Thing Can Be Bad

By Bobby Robins Jan 25, 2012

 

What’s the deal with folic acid?

Folic acid (also known as folate) is a water-soluble vitamin that, along with vitamin B12 belongs to the group of B-complex vitamins. It’s an essential vitamin, meaning that our bodies can’t make it themselves, and it’s vital for production of new cells (aka the building blocks of life). Some scientists also speculate that folic acid plays a role in maintaining heart health and preventing cell mutations that may lead to cancer.

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