COGNITIVE FUNCTIONS: FOOD FOR THOUGHT

inflammation

Inflammatory responses continuously take place in our body to protect us against infections. Our brain is constantly exposed to chronic-low grade inflammation (2).

When the inflammation response is sustained, it has the potential to become damaging for the brain: this is the cause of many brain pathologies (3-6). Accordingly, limiting this inflammation is of great importance (7). Over the last few years, it is becoming clearer that our nutrition has a significant influence on our physical and mental health (8).

A third of dementia may be preventable: nutrition and exercise have a direct influence on the risk of disease development (9).

Interestingly, a growing amount of studies have shown vast amount of benefits from marine algae nutrition, such as plnktn. (Marine Phytoplankton). As a primary of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, it embodies the begin of the global food chain. Lucky for us, it seems that its omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants are playing key roles in our brain development and cognitive functioning (10-14).

- It supports brain development, growth and plasticity.
- It stimulates signal transfer throughout our nervous system.
- It prevents or slows cognitive deterioration.

We cannot produce adequate amounts of fatty acids or antioxidants ourselves, so our diet must provide them (15).

OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS

A great amount of studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids can decrease and shorten the inflammatory response in the brain. This is due to their ability to:

- Down regulate substances - cytokines, enzymes, etc. - that promote inflammation.
- Induce mediators that resolve inflammatory responses.
- Stimulate production of neuroprotectin, which increases longevity of the brain (16).
- Improves blood flow in the brain during cognitive tasks.

Neuroprotectin: substances which protect the brain and neuronal system against inflammation and oxidative damage.

ANTIOXIDANTS

As mentioned before, the accumulative damage of inflammation and oxidative stress can cause damage, degeneration, and eventually cognitive decline. A vast amount of research has shown that antioxidants can decrease oxidative damage and even reduce progression of brain disease, such as Alzheimer’s. Adding antioxidants to our nutrition has been proven to be effecting in combating this oxidative damage (17). plnktn. contains powerful antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, superoxide dismutase, astaxanthin, and many others (18).

COGNITIVE HEALTH

Numerous studies show beneficial effects on brain integrity and associated cognitive functioning, such as concentration time, memory function (19-21).

Birth, childhood, and adulthood

In future posts we will share with you the beneficial effects of these nutrients on brain development in children (22). But to summarize, research suggests that children with a higher intake of fatty acids perform better with regard to the following cognitive outcomes: reading, spelling, memory, processing speed, attention and executive functions. A higher intake of fatty acids was also associated with significantly improved memory and reaction time of memory (23). At later stages of life, these substances can reduce the risk of impaired brain functioning.

Adequate omega-3 fatty acid consumption is associated with decreased risk of Alzheimer's disease and dementia (24-25).

Several studies suggest that higher intake of DHA - a component of certain fatty acids - might prevent development of Alzheimer's disease (26-27).

DOES IT INFLUENCE HOW WE FEEL?

Yes it does!

Various studies show positive effects of these nutrients for people suffering from: 

Depression: Interestingly, various studies reported that people suffering from depression had significant low levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Subsequently, supplementing and increasing intake of these fatty acids showed to be effective in treating depression in patients who, despite sufficient standardized therapy, remained depressed (28-29).

On top of that, studies shows positive effects for people with anxiety, bipolar disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and epilepsy (30-33).

CONCLUSION

Adding plnktn. to your daily nutrition might offers a variety of substances that support adequate cognitive functioning, and prevent your brain against oxidative damage and inflammation.

However, plnktn. is not a replacement of your medication. Always consult your or our doctor before taking Marine Phytoplankton as a replacement.

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DISCOVER MARINE PHYTOPLANKTON

Marine Phytoplankton, an "all-in-one" superfood full of natural nutrients. 

Besides being the source of Omega-3 fatty acids, Marine Phytoplankton is rich in vitamins minerals and strong antioxidants. 

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LIST OF REFERENCES
Please click below to see which scientific articles were used to gather information concerning the subject.

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(2). Di Benedetto, S.; Müller, L.;Wenger, E.; Düzel, S.; Pawelec, G. Contribution of neuroinflammation and immunity to brain aging and the mitigating effects of physical and cognitive interventions. Neurosci.

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(14). Tassoni D, Kaur G, Weisinger RS, Sinclair AJ. The role of eicosanoids in the brain. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2008;17 Suppl 1:220-8. PMID: 18296342.

 

(15). Lauritzen, L., Brambilla,P., Mazzocchi, A., Harslof, L.B., Ciappolino, V., Agostoni, C., 2016. DHA effects in brain development and function. Nutrients 8.

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(17). Head E, Rofina J, Zicker S. Oxidative stress, aging, and central nervous system disease in the canine model of human brain aging. Vet Clin North AmSmall Anim Pract. 2008 Jan;38(1):167-78, vi. doi: 10.1016/j.cvsm.2007.10.002.PMID: 18249248; PMCID: PMC2390776.

 

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(22). Swanson, D., Block, R.,Mousa, S.A., 2012. Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA: health benefits throughout life. Adv. Nutr. 3, 1–7

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(27). Morris, M.C., Evans, D.A.,Bienias, J.L., Tangney, C.C., Bennett, D.A., Wilson, R.S., Aggarwal, N.,Schneider, J., 2003. Consumption of fish and n-3 fatty acids and risk of incident Alzheimer disease. Arch. Neurol. 60, 940–946

(28). Peet M, Horrobin DF. A dose-ranging study of the effects of ethyl-eicosapentaenoate in patients with ongoing depression despite apparently adequate treatment with standard drugs. ArchGen Psychiatry. 2002 Oct;59(10):913-9. doi: 10.1001/archpsyc.59.10.913. PMID:12365878.

 

(29). Su KP, Huang SY, Chiu CC, Shen WW. Omega-3 fatty acids in major depressive disorder. A preliminary double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol.2003 Aug;13(4):267-71. doi: 10.1016/s0924-977x(03)00032-4. Erratum in: EurNeuropsychopharmacol. 2004 Mar;14(2):173. PMID: 12888186.

 

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