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to a new study, Cognitive Abilities begin to
deteriorate around the age of 27
According to Drs. Timothy Salthouse and Eric R. Braverman,
the effects of the brain's cognitive
abilities become less effective as early as
A recent study by Dr. Timothy Salthouse, a University of
Virginia professor of psychology and the
study's lead investigator, shows that people
lose their full capacity to make rapid
comparisons, remember unrelated information,
and detect relationships.
Dr. Eric R. Braverman, author of the New York Times
best-seller YOUNGER (THINNER) YOU DIET: How
Understanding Your Brain Chemistry Can Help
You Lose Weight, Reverse Aging, and Fight
Disease (Rodale), has lectured on this topic
both domestically and internationally.
Braverman says bad fats are literally
clogging your brain. Just as excess body fat
strains your heart muscle, excess brain fat
strains your cognitive abilities.
"You can blame low acetylcholine levels for that," says
"A fat-clogged brain loses its ability to produce the
neurotransmitter, which monitors brain
speed, regulates sensory input, and accesses
What's more, another study from Case Western University in
2000 posited that a high-fat diet during
early and mid-adulthood could be associated
with an increased risk of developing
Alzheimer's later in life.
In people aged 20 to 39, the combination of a genetic
predisposition and a diet with more than 40
percent of calories from fat raised the risk
of Alzheimer's by almost 23 times.
What lesson can be learned? Start increasing your
acetylcholine levels now!
"It's not too late," urges Dr. Braverman. "Even a damaged,
overweight brain can be healed by weight
''Replace your overconsumption of bad fats with healthy fats,
and retrain the brain to function properly."
Constantly engaging your mind and eating well are keys to
keeping your brain young. As you exercise
your brain, you increase its ability for
attention and retention, therefore creating
more "brain memory."
And by increasing your acetylcholine, you are creating a
faster, more fluid brain, which will
ultimately facilitate an increase in your
In addition, you can increase acetylcholine through
intellectual stimulation: reading books and
magazines, completing a crossword or Sodoku
puzzle, engaging in debates, or creating
Foods high in acetylcholine include: almonds, beef,
blueberries, broccoli, celery, chicken,
coffee, eggs, grape juice, oranges, peanuts,
and peanut butter.