Health

12 Astounding Facts About How Your Brain Works

by Lisa Hirsch Lozano 9:00 AM, July 13, 2017

Aired July 13, 2017

Everyone knows that the human brain is a mysterious and magical thing -- but maybe you didn’t know just HOW amazing it really is. Check out these 12 facts from Dr. Mehmet Oz that will open your eyes in a BIG way.

The Brain is the Fattiest Organ in the Body

Dr. Oz says that the brain is made up of 60 percent fat. He explains why this is important, “Fat is the lubricant of our brains so our nerves can talk to each other. When we don’t eat the right fats, we make our brains so rigid and solid that we can’t cope with the world around us, and people get depressed.”

He explains that we need our neurons (connections) to be lubricated with good fats in order for our brain cells to “talk” to each other.

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The Frontal Lobe “Makes Us Human”

Planning, morality, our ability to work in groups and our ability to restrain ourselves are all related to our “higher brain.” But this part of the brain doesn’t mature until you’re in your mid-20s. “That’s why young people get into car accidents, they get hooked on drugs,” Dr. Oz says.

Creative People Have Learned to Use Both Sides of Their Brain

The corpus callosum is the “interstate” of your brain, which connects the left and the right side of your brain. “This allows us to learn musical instruments on one part, language on the other part,” Dr. Oz says. When we multitask between both sides of our brain, we strengthen our corpus callosum, which can have major benefits. “People who are really creative have learned how to use both sides of the brain,” he says.

Stress Can Affect Your Ability to Learn

Our memories are stored in a part of our brain called the hippocampus. “When we’re stressed out, we can’t store memories,” Dr. Oz says. And when you can’t remember things, you can’t learn.

You Need Vision + Hearing to Be Able to Balance Properly

Balance is crucial to just about all the functions of our daily lives. And you need to use your vision, hearing and the “balance” center of your brain, the cerebellum, to be able to balance. Want proof? Just try standing on one foot and closing your eyes.

High Blood Pressure is the No. 1 Cause of Aging

Strokes can be caused by high blood pressure making blood vessels burst in the brain. And when those blood vessels burst, the bleed ends up damaging our brain cells. Dr. Oz says, “It’s one of the reasons that high blood pressure is the number one cause of aging, of all.”

Have the Worst Headache You’ve Ever? It Could Be an Aneurysm

An aneurysm is a small bubble in a blood vessel in your brain, which is very susceptible to bursting and causing a stroke. Luckily, Dr. Oz says there are surgeries to fix this. So he says, “If you have the worst headache you have ever had, the first thing you should think of is, ‘Do I have an aneurysm?’ It’s not like a little headache, it’s like the worst headache ever.”

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Your Brain Shrinks When You Have Alzheimer’s Disease

“Alzheimer’s is when the power lines [of your brain] shrink up so much that they can’t convey information,” Dr. Oz explains. But the good news is that Dr. Oz says you can help to prevent this by eating the right foods.

Eating Healthy Fats + More Can Help You Avoid Dementia

If you want to protect yourself from dementia, trying adding these three things to your diet.

Cold-Water Fish

Cold water fish like salmon contain fats that are flexible, which in turn help our brain become more flexible and healthy. Dr. Oz recommends at least one serving per week.

Leafy Greens

These have B vitamins that are important for the metabolism of your brain.

Pumpkin Seeds

This crunchy snack features magnesium, and Dr. Oz says that 80 percent of Americans are deficient in magnesium.

Using Your Non-Dominant Hand Can Help Exercise Your Brain

To keep your brain healthy, make sure you’re exercising both sides of your brain. But how, you might wonder? Try eating with the hand you normally don’t use.

Drinking Alcohol Responsibly Can Help Reduce Your Risk of Dementia

Dr. Oz says that if you drink alcohol responsibly, it can actually help protect against dementia. He cautions though, that men should limit themselves to two servings daily, and women should have only one.

The Cure to Alzheimer’s Could Arrive in the Next Decade

Don’t let what you learned above scare you too much -- Dr. Oz says a lot of the power is in your hands if you follow his advice. And moreover, he says, “Medicine is within a decade of curing these problems, I believe in my heart.”

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