THE NEW MARILYN WEBSITE

Everything you need to know about preventing 'brain drain'

A drained brain is when you feel stressed, frazzled tired and anxious. From smart phones, to process foods, to the hours spent on our jobs, the schedules we are balancing - these are all contributing to brain drain. 350 million people around the world now have an anxiety based disorder.

So, a lot of people might not know what a ‘drained brain’ is, but they know if they have it. Over time if you are called what I call ‘drained’, cortisol is a stress hormone, and if it goes high and stays high, it literally shrinks your brain. 

This is the prefrontal cortex, this is part that sets us apart from animals. It is the most advanced part of the human brain. If you don’t know how to handle it, it shrinks this part of the brain.

If you don’t fix your drained brain, you are four times more likely to develop the number one cause of preventable death and that is high blood pressure. And women who have panic attacks are more likely to have a heart attack. This isn’t just about feeling better it is about your life.

Using food as self-medication is, after all, the most socially acceptable way to drug yourself, so when you are feeling low you reach for the ice-cream. But sugar can be a disaster for your brain, so it is vital for us to reduce blood sugar spikes lurking in all tempting food.

It's important to know the difference between High GI and Low GI foods. Simply said, High GI foods will spike your blood sugar, cause gut inflammation and stress, while low GI foods keep your blood sugar steady.        

Examples of High GI foods are candy, cookies, pasta, cake, white rice, bread.

They are not just bad for your waistline, they profoundly negatively affect the brain and the body, and even create growth factors that help cancer cells grow and divide.

Low GI foods actually protect the brain. So opt for foods you see here like lentils kidney beans, seeds and strawberries.                                                                                                    

We need to take into account foods that may not seem sweet, but still spike our blood sugar. Things like white bread and rice. So the simple way to think of it is to swap simple carbs like bread with vegetables or other complex cards like quinoa or brown rice.

There are some simple swaps that can help keep your blood sugar in check. Cut your pasta in half and sub zucchini or squash noodles for half. You can use a vegetable peeler if you don't have a spiralizer.

When choosing pasta, go for spaghetti – it spikes blood sugar less than shaped pasta like macaroni. And when making pasta, add broccoli or cauliflower to add to the bulk, rather than more pasta.

Vinegar has been proven to prevent starch in carbs to turning into sugar. You will effortlessly lower your blood sugar by swapping bought salad dressings for a mixture of olive oil