If you're looking for a delicious, vegetarian, Rainbow Power Recipe, this meal is a nutrient powerhouse. This spicy curry dish includes chili peppers that are a metabolism-boosting Dopamine food; ginger and sweet potatoes support GABA; and cumin boosts Serotonin.
For a satisfying and total brain boosting meal, this chicken dish will be sure to warm and nourish you on cold winter nights. It's high in antioxidant spices and infused with vital-nutrient rooibos tea. The taste and smell of the garlic will be sure to please - plus garlic is beneficial for heart health and is a type of natural antibiotic.
Did You Know . . . about Oregano
There are three distinct varieties of oregano. The most familiar one, found in kitchens across the country, is Greek or Mediterranean oregano. Mexican oregano has a more "earthy" flavor. Cuban oregano is not well known outside the Caribbean, but its distinct taste makes it worth looking for.
To find other recipes, look under the Recipe Category of my blog. They're all a great addition to a Rainbow Diet.
One of the greatest brain defenses is the addition of spices to your meals. Spices function like little brain medications. They are nutrient dense; each can provide between 20 and 80 different nutrients. By using them regularly, you are benefitting by getting more important vitamins, minerals, and even antioxidants.
Every time you add spices, you're adding nutrients and upgrading your meal without having added a single calorie. And because they are nutrient dense, they are thermogenic, which means they naturally increase your metabolism, helping you to burn more of your food as fuel, and to store less as body fat.
In this recipe, the allspice helps reduce blood pressure. Nutmeg can help alleviate depression. Cinnamon lowers blood sugar and boosts your metabolism, making it a super dopamine-boosting meal. The fruit increases your other biochemicals. Spices are also helpful in better metabolizing your food. Try adding yogurt for an extra health boost.
Here's a Serotonin and Dopamine boosting turkey recipe for all year long. Turkey is a lean protein that is high in brain chemical precursors. It contains tryptophan, a precursor to serotonin, as well as tyrosine and phenylalanine, precursors to dopamine.
Tryptophan is an amino acid that the brain and body need, but cannot make on its own. Tyrosine is also an amino acid - in abundance, it increases your resistance to stress and acts as one of the body's natural pain relievers. But most importantly, tyrosine is an adrenaline builder. Phenylalanine, an essential amino acid found in high-protein foods, will help to boost your metabolism.
Part 4 of the Series: Aging and the "Pauses of Life"
Cardiopause - a decline in pumping power, valves and blood flow
Vasculopause - a decline in blood flow from the heart to the rest of the body
Let’s look at the connection between your heart and your brain’s own age accelerators. Basically, when the brain breaks, the heart breaks. Now you have a broken heart and a broken brain. A lack of the following neurotransmitters can put you at risk for cardiopause:
Dopamine: A lack of this neurotransmitter may lead to obesity, which accelerates all forms of heart disease because it causes your blood vessels to become clogged with fat. Addictions (food, alcohol, smoking, cocaine, etc.) can all accelerate heart disease.
Acetylcholine: A lack of this can cause your brain and mind to deteriorate and heart disease can accelerate as a result.
GABA: A GABA deficiency typically begins as a loss of calm and a simultaneous increase in blood pressure. Anxiety and stress are well-known causes of heart disease.
Serotonin: A lack of this brain chemical may lead to depression, which often disrupts sleep patterns. Too little or too much sleep might increase your risk of developing heart disease. What’s more, coronary artery disease is often associated with depression.
When Vasculopause Strikes – vasculopause usually begins around age 50. It is the second limb of heart disease and is equally as important to detect and reverse as cardiopause. It refers to changes in your blood flow from the heart to the rest of the body. The vascular system carries oxygen-rich blood away from the heart through blood vessels, arteries, and tiny capillaries into the tissues, and back to the heart through your veins.
These are likely scenarios of vasculopause:
Unfortunately, high blood pressure is painless, symptomless, and often unexpected. It affects the middle-aged and elderly who are obese or heavy drinkers. It also affects women who are currently taking oral contraceptives or using recreational drugs.
Pain and emotional distress are certainly age accelerators leading to high blood pressure, and GABA deficiencies leading to pain and anxiety contribute to high blood pressure. If you can boost your GABA, you’ll watch your blood pressure drop.
Cardiopause and Vasculopause can be Reversed:
I have witnessed long-term improvement in patients - in some cases almost full reversals that last for years. These results are possible because we look at heart failure as a systemic issue. In other words, we treat the whole person, not just the pumping condition of the heart (although that’s obviously a key element of our program). This treatment includes making healthy lifestyle changes as well as introducing nutrients and supplements, bio-identical hormones, and medications if necessary that are designed to improve the heart’s and vascular system’s functions and prevent future problems without negative side effects.
My Rainbow Diet is a good place to start as a nutritional approach to controlling high blood pressure and heart disease. It’s an eating plan that is based on incorporating the seven major colors of the rainbow – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet – into the foods you eat. Fruits and vegetables of all colors are packed with disease-fighting nutrients.
We at PATH Medical can teach you how to use these nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables, as well as the addition of lean protein (especially fish), fiber-rich whole grains, legumes, healthy fats and oils, and lots of spices and herbs, to help you achieve your optimal weight, and to improve your blood pressure, cholesterol, and your overall cardiovascular health.
HEALTHY AGING HAPPENS when we can increase our brain functioning, which controls the health of the rest of the entire body.The most common ailments, including arthritis, osteoporosis, heart disease, high blood pressure, loss of skin tone, and even back pain, are all age-related conditions that are affected by an increasingly aging brain.
Yet the brain can be taught to break the aging code and actually resurrect an aging body. By balancing the brain with nutrient supplements, proper diet, natural hormones, medications, and lifestyle changes, I help my patients delay the progression of many of these diseases so that their life can return to a more normal, age-appropriate state. It's a simple remedy: to restore your health, restore your brain chemistry. And the earlier you start, the better your chances of postponing or completely avoiding the ravages of the aging process.
There are plenty of things you can start today on your own: incorporate important vitamins and minerals into your diet, take supplements that your body needs that it may no longer be producing or getting from a typical diet, and adopt a Rainbow Diet. My diet is easy to remember: by eating meals that reflect the colors of the rainbow, you are guaranteeing that you are getting high doses of vitamin-rich foods. What's more, a diet that is high in colorful fruits and vegetables has been shown to provide many benefits to your overall health.
Try this colorful salad with fruits and vegetables that are abundant during the winter months. It's a Vitamin C, A, and Antioxidant-rich salad with the addition of healthy fats.
For further help, you can make an appointment or schedule a phone consultation, so that we can further assist you on your PATH to health and a Younger YOU.
Indian dishes are loaded with spices. There are so many spices in the Garam Masala that will enhance and boost all of your brain chemicals, and they will also effectively boost/rev your metabolism. The chicken is an excellent source of protein that will also enhance all of your brain chemicals. The yogurt is high in both calcium and protein, which together are known to raise metabolic rate and improve digestion and bowel health. It also supports your immune system, reduces overall inflammation, and lowers your LDL, or "bad" cholesterol. That's why I consider this dish to be a Younger (Thinner) You superfood.
Study after study shows the benefits of spices. For example, the cinnamon (one ingredient of the garam masala), has tremendous blood sugar benefits.
Ginger can help to improve blood circulation and digestion, as well as lowering blood pressure.
Coriander alleviates indigestion, lowers serum cholesterol, increases HDL cholesterol levels, lowers LDL cholesterol levels, and facilitates the removal of aluminum, lead, and mercury from the body.
Cumin can lower elevated blood sugar, lower cholesterol and elevated triglycerides, and alleviate intestinal cramps.
Cloves may suppress some forms of bacteria, improve digestion, and alleviate pain.
Fennel can alleviate diarrhea and indigestion, improve kidney function, improve liver function, and improve brain metabolism.
Mustard seed may increase metabolism, alleviate bronchitis, and alleviate the common cold.
All of the spices in this recipe have potential health benefits and are brain chemical augmenters. Keep leftover Garam Masala in a container with a tight-fitting lid and use it to spice up any poultry, fish, or meat dish.
Part 2 of the Series: Aging and the "Pauses of Life"
Thyropause - Aging and Weakening of the Thyroid System
Why is the thyroid important?
Your thyroid gland controls the rate that your body burns the fuel necessary to keep you and your mood going. It does this by synthesizing the hormones thyroxine (T4) and tri-iodothyronine (T3). These thyroid hormones are necessary in adults for normal function of the other organs and systems. Thyroid hormones also affect tissue growth and maturation, help regulate fat digestion, and increase intestinal absorption of carbohydrates.
Signs of thyropause:
Thyropause marks the beginning of a metabolic disorder, which can begin as early as birth but typically begins between the ages of 30 and 50. If you know that you have a dopamine deficiency, you are a likely candidate for experiencing thyropause sooner than you think. Changes can be subtle, but many of the following symptoms could indicate the possibility that you're experiencing thyropause (the aging and weakening of your thyroid):
Thyroid Problems Can Be Reversed:
Any form of thyroid disease can be managed with medication. To treat an aging thyroid, you start with natural thyroid treatment. If it is picked up soon enough, the disease is stopped in its tracks. Taking natural thyroid supplements when you need them works like taking other bioidentical hormones. It's not a crutch. It doesn't make the thyroid weaker but actually makes it less likely to decline by getting its adequate support. Your thyroid health may require bioidentical hormone supplementations of the hormones T3 and T4.
Because there's a distinct relationship between your thyroid and a dopamine deficiency, you can augment your dopamine with foods and nutrients. But with thyroid problems, it may best to stay away from foods that are known as goitrogens (cruciferous vegetables, soybeans, peaches, strawberries, peanuts, radishes, spinach, and millet). Instead, choose Thyropause-reversing meals such as:
*omelets made with low-fat cheddar cheese
*black bean soup
*organic turkey with lentil sauce
*4 oz. lean steak, broiled with fresh garlic and basil and a green bean salad
*japanese seaweed salad
Along with spices, herbs, teas, water, yogurt, balanced foods, fiber-filled foods, colorful fruits and vegetables, it's important to include carefully chosen proteins on my Younger (Thinner) You Diet. Although chicken can be eaten every day, it can get boring looking at the same boneless, skinless chicken breast every night.
Wild-caught fish, on the other hand, offers a low-fat, healthy variety of choices that can be consumed on a regular basis. Fish oils can reduce your risk of heart disease, help prevent osteoporosis, and is considered the number one anti-inflammatory protein. On this diet, you can choose one fish meal per day.
This complete Younger (Thinner) You powerhouse meal supports all of your brain chemistry. Mackerel not only increases acetylcholine and serotonin, it can also help you beat a blue mood. Peas are dopamine and GABA precursors, and lemon supports GABA and dopamine. Each serving has 290 calories.
Other ways to prepare fish is to simply bake, broil, or steam it with a touch of olive oil and three of your favorite spices to create your own recipes. Fish (especially cold-water fish such as bluefish, cod, haddock, halibut, mackerel, salmon, sardines, snapper, and trout) are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are two omega-3 fats that have been singled out for their powerful heart- and brain-protective properties.
Be sure to avoid all fried, salted and pickled fish, or fish packed in oil. Eat bass, tuna, swordfish, and shellfish infrequently as they contain high concentrations of pollutants such as heavy metals (particularly mercury) and PCBs.
circulation, and prevent and fight colds and viruses. Garlic reduces heart attack risk, improves blood circulation, lowers blood pressure, eliminates intestinal parasites, stimulates the immune system, and so much more.
Some herbs, such as basil, lemon balm, sage, and mint can help improve your brain speed as they stimulate acetylcholine receptors. So, go ahead and boost your brain speed and overall health. It's as simple as sprinkling herbs on every meal of the day.
Eric R. Braverman, M.D.
Dr. Braverman is a Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Brandeis University and NYU Medical School, did brain research at Harvard Medical School, and trained at an affiliate of Yale Medical School. He is acknowledged worldwide as an expert in brain-based diagnosis and treatment, and he lectures to and trains doctors in anti-aging medicine.