What are Brainwaves: How Brainwaves are Measured

Part 2 of a 2-Part Series

Brainwaves HealthyOur brainwaves change according to our physical activity, our mood, our thoughts and feelings, and whether we are awake or asleep. Like musicians playing their instruments during a symphony, our brainwaves work together in harmony.

Click here to read part one.

That the brains of mammals produce electrical pulses has been known to science since 1875. Actual recordings of brain waves in an animal were made in 1912. Brain wave activity in the human brain has been studied since 1924, when the first recording of human brain wave activity was made.healthy Brainwaves

Electricity is measured in units of frequency known as hertz. A hertz is defined as one cycle per second and is named for Heinrich Rudolf Hertz, the first person to provide conclusive proof of the existence of electromagnetic waves. An electroencephalograph machine (EEG) measures the brain’s electrical activity.

Brain wave activity originates with the electrical activity of individual neurons communicating together and is happening continuously throughout waking and sleeping. Although we now know the human brain produces seven different electrical brain wave patterns, four basic patterns are the most studied and the most understood.

 Brainwave MeasurementAlpha, Beta, Delta, and Theta

  • All brain wave patterns are active all of the time. However, brain wave patterns vary and dominate depending on level of a person’s activity, concentration, or mood, and whether awake or asleep.
  • Beta is a fast wave. It varies between 12 to 38 hertz depending on our level of activity, concentration and focus, as well as our mood and level of excitement or anxiety. Beta is dominate during our waking hours. Important in activities of problem solving, judgment and decision making, beta waves are essential for healthy waking activity.
  • Alpha waves are also dominate during waking hours, but they are a slower wave of 8 to 12 hertz. Beta takes a lot of energy and the brain needs to relax intermittently. Alpha waves represent the brain’s relaxation or resting state. The brain constantly uses Alpha along with Beta. Alpha occurs when we close our eyes, think quiet thoughts, day dream, meditate, or feel calm. Alpha is important for overall mental coordination, mind/body integration, calmness and alertness, and integration of learning.
  • Theta waves are slow waves of 3 to 8 hertz. These dominate during sleep during deep meditation. Theta reveals our brains withdrawing from the external world to focus within. During Theta, learning and memory record. It is while in Theta that we experience our dreams. Theta is also a healing and regeneration state for the body.Brainwaves Health
  • Delta waves dominate during deep, dreamless sleep. They are slow waves of .5 to 3 hertz. Deep body regeneration and healing occur during Delta. There is complete disengagement from the external world as the brain and body go deeply inward. It is difficult to awaken a person from Delta sleep and children are almost impossible to waken from Delta.

Disruption

As mentioned earlier, our brainwaves work together in harmony, but when there is a disruption of this harmonic condition, there is a disruption in brain function. Brain wave balance is critical to emotional and neurological health. Anxiety disorders, sleep problems, nightmares, autism, impulsive behavior, anger/aggression, depression, chronic nerve pain and spasticity reveal over-arousal of certain brain areas. Scientists attribute under-arousal of certain brain areas to attention deficit, chronic pain and insomnia.

Conditions as tic disorders, epilepsy, panic attacks, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, migraines, sleep apnea, teeth grinding, vertigo, and tinnitus (ringing in the ears) reveal instabilities in brain rhythms. Traumatic brain injury(TBI) concussion, stroke, and coma all affect brain wave balance and brain function.

Brainwave AdaptabilityAdaptability

The brain is constantly changing and evolving; constantly creating new neurons.  Neuroplasticity equals adaptability, growth and change. Neuroplasticity allows the brain to heal itself from injury. Due to advances in EEG technology, it is possible to provide feedback to the brain on whether brain waves are in sync.

During neurofeedback, technicians place electrodes on the scalp, attached to specialized EEG machines. These display images on computer screens and generate sounds to detect and measure different brainwaves. The images and sounds provide information, known as feedback, and allow the brain to learn to reharmonize the various brain waves and allow the brain to reregulate and return to harmonic balance.

Our brains determine our emotional states, our perceptions, and our reactions to the world around us. Our brains are complex, magnificent, and mysterious.  We still have much to learn about who we are and how our brains work.


What are Brainwaves?

Part 1 of a 2-Part Series

Brain PowerWe are electrical beings. Our bodies produce electricity every second of every day. Our heart beats because of rhythmic, electrical pulses created by specialized cells located within the heart itself. The 100 billion neurons in our brain constantly create electrical pulses every second of every day.

Brain electricity is like a symphony. Our brain creates synchronized electrical pulses generated from masses of neurons communicating with each other. This electrical activity is known as brainwave activity.

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Water: Important for Good Health

Part 2 of a 2-Part Series

Drinking Water HealthLast week, I wrote and posted a blog about how important water intake is for survival. This week, I further discuss the subject, which is extremely important to our very survival. If you don’t drink water, you become dehydrated. And your body cannot properly carry out normal functions. Dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired and unable to concentrate. Water is essential to good health.  Read More


Water: Why is it so Important?

Part 1 of a 2-Part Series

Hyaluronic Acid and Water

It seems as if medical professionals constantly tell us to drink water. The usual suggestion is at least eight 8 oz. glasses per day. But that comes out to 64 ounces, which is an entire gallon of water per day per person! Remembering to constantly drink water during the day is difficult sometimes, especially when I don’t feel thirsty. And I always wonder why we need to drink that much. Now that I know more about science as it relates to the brain and body, I understand the connection between water and hyaluronic acid. Read on to learn more.  Read More


What Is Hyaluronic Acid & Why Is It Important?

Key Ingredient Hyaluronic AcidIt seems almost every cosmetic, face cream, face or eye serum, and body lotion contains hyaluronic acid — as a major ingredient. But, what is it and why is it so important?

Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance found throughout the human body. It is also found in the bodies of all animals, including microbes. The cells in the body manufacture hyaluronic acid. In fact, it is a matrix which surrounds our cells.

The Matrix (not that one)

A matrix is an environment or material in which something develops. For example, the uterus is the matrix for an unborn child. A matrix is also a medium or substance that surrounds or supports something. The hyaluronic acid in our bodies surrounds, supports and nourishes our cells.

Hyaluronic Acid MatrixThink of hyaluronic acid like a Jell-O mold with fruit. Bits of fruit rest, suspended in the semi-soft substance of gelatin.  The Jell-O supports the fruit, keeping the fruit bits from sticking together. In much the same way, the hyaluronic acid that surrounds our cells prevents them from sticking together.

Brain BathBrain Health Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is an important component of synovial fluid. Special cells within the brain produce this fluid, which bathes and nourishes our brain, nerves and joint tissues. Fluids in the eyes and joints feature the highest concentration. Fifty percent of the hyaluronic acid produced by the body is in the skin.

Hyaluronic acid binds with water. In fact, it attracts 1000 times its own weight in water!! It is nature’s moisturizer, which is essential to the function of our bodies. Bodily fluids, tissues and cells also contain it. And it serves the vital function of keeping cells hydrated. Hyaluronic acid lubricates muscular connective tissues by enhancing the sliding between adjacent tissue layers.

Aging Skin Hyaluronic Acid

If your skin looks like this, call me immediately.

In the Skin

Hyaluronic acid is vital to the maintenance of healthy connective tissue. It is also involved in cell migration, wound healing, formation of blood vessels, and skin elasticity. Aging skin is associated with loss of moisture. And hyaluronic acid is the key molecule involved in skin moisture.

As we age, the body produces less hyaluronic acid, leading to wrinkles and causing joints to ache.

The big question is: What can we do about it?

Some foods encourage hyaluronic acid production. These include bone broth, soybeans, leafy greens, citrus fruits and starchy root vegetables. These provide bioavailable sources of the hyaluronic acid matrix.Leafy Greens Skin Help

How to Replace Hyaluronic Acid

Liquid BioCell Life, Skin, Sport, and Pure are the ONLY sources for a liquid matrix of collagen and hyaluronic acid that are virtually identical to the matrix in our bodies. Scientific studies of the product have found that subjects who took Liquid BioCell Life daily for 12 weeks see an increase in hyaluronic acid of 6000%.

Some information for this post comes from the following source: Papakonstantinou, E. et alHyaluronic acid: A key molecule in skin aging’ in Dermato Endocrinology 4.3 (2012) pp. 253-258.al


Diet Direction

Diet Direction It seems like everyone is always talking about diet. We are a culture obsessed with the way we look. Yet, we are a nation of fat people! This is quite a paradox. Sometimes, I think I have spent my entire adult life thinking and worrying about my weight and body image. I’m practically a charter member of the international diet program, Weight Watchers – not to mention the number of times I have joined and quit.

Diet NirvanaDiet Direction

Over the years, I have tried myriad diets, including the varieties that require injections. Like millions of other Americans, I’ve been searching for the Holy Grail of diets. only to discover that no such thing exists! No diet will lead me to the Nirvana of Perfect Body Weight. And by the way, I diet not just because of how much I weigh. The ratio of body fat to body muscle matters much more than the number on the scale. So, what’s the answer? The truth is that changing my body requires a change in lifestyle. What matters is the type and quantity of food I eat, exercise I do, and amount of sleep I get.

Diet SleepDiet Dreams

Lack of quality sleep leads to weight gain. Also important is the way I think as well as the words I think and tell myself. Man, oh man, reality can be difficult! If I want to change my lifestyle, where should I start?

  • The latest research points to the fact that the healthiest way to eat is a plant-based diet. What does that mean? Must I become a vegetarian (does not eat meat, fish or poultry, but does eat eggs, and/or milk and cheese) or a vegan (does not eat meat, fish, or poultry or animal products, including milk and eggs)?
  • Research states that a healthy diet includes lots of leafy green vegetables. And not just salad greens, but kale, collard greens and spinach. We also need to eat cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts. We also need to eat fresh fruits and vegetables with lots of color, like carrots, squash, sweet potatoes, low glycemic fruits like berries.Leafy Greens Diet

What else should my diet include?

I also need whole grains (no white flour or white rice) and beans (also known as legumes), as well as lentils, peas, and peanuts. And every diet around warns you to stay away from sugary stuff and fried foods. (Gosh, but I really like In-N-Out French fries).

Sounds a lot like a vegetarian diet to me.

Then, looking a little further, I discovered the Mediterranean Diet.Research suggests people who follow a Mediterranean diet lose 52% more weight than the standard low-fat diet because it isn’t just a fad or limited list of foods. This way of eating begins with the foundation of vegetables and whole grains, but also includes small quantities of lean meats and fish, a few times a week. This seems like something I can ease into. Fortunately, great recipes and resources on the internet can help me change the way I cook. If you’re interested in this type of eating plan, check out Forks Over Knives. It has lots of fantastic vegetarian recipes or Food Revolution, which offers inspiration for changing what you eat.

Modere Diet TipsSupplemental Assistance in Diet

The lifestyle line I carry, Modere, also offers safe and effective products designed to help you achieve your body’s goals and continue living a healthy lifestyle. If you’re interested in upping the ante in your journey toward optimal health, give me a call. Using Modere as well as EEG Neurofeedback, I can offer you a jumpstart on body, brain health!



Pet Joint Pain Solution

Pet Pain ModerePet Pain

Like their human companions, dogs, cats and horses can suffer joint pain. Our furry friends bring us joy and comfort and are members of the family. We worry about them when they don’t feel their best and we want the best care possible for them. But did you know that one of most common problems for dogs and cats is being overweight? We love them and show it with treats and extra food. Like humans, being overweight can create all kinds of health problems. Read More


EEG Neurofeedback

Neurofeedback GlendoraChanging the Way the Brain Functions

First, an electroencephalogram, also known as EEG, measures the rhythmic electrical activity of the nerve cells in the brain, known as brainwaves. So, EEG Neurofeedback uses EEG measurement technology to inform patients about brainwave activity. Then, electrical activity in the brain occurs at various frequencies. These frequencies relate to different brain and body functions. Over-or under-production of different frequencies results in difficulties. Potential difficulties include attention and learning, sleeplessness, anxiety, migraines, or more serious conditions — such as epilepsy and coma.

Biofeedback & NeurofeedbackEEG Neurofeedback Glendora

Unfortunately, people confuse Biofeedback and Neurofeedback:

  • Biofeedback uses precise instruments placed on the body to measure physiological activity such as heart function, breathing, muscle activity, and skin temperature. Thus, the instruments gives patients information about physiological activity measurement, or “feedback” about how the person functions. Since the 1970’s, Biofeedback successfully promotes muscle relaxation, eases pain, reduces anxiety, and can reduce blood pressure.
  • Also known as EEG Neurofeedback improves brain function by changing brainwave patterns that are out-of-sync. With Neurofeedback training, a technician places non-invasive, painless sensors —called electrodes— on the surface of the head. The electrodes do not have needles and do not produce electrical current. Thus, unlike Biofeedback, which measures physiological responses, Neurofeedback provides direct information about brainwave activity and function. Most of all, the electrodes amplify and display the brainwave patterns on a computer screen.

Brainwave PatternsDepending on the type of neurofeedback program, patients may see actual brainwave patterns, watch objects move around the screen to “play” video games, or move physical objects as the brainwave activity changes. While on feedback (listening to beeping sounds, watching brainwave patterns, or “playing” games), patients unconsciously learn to change brainwave patterns.

Therefore, the effectiveness of EEG Neurofeedback depends on the immediacy of the feedback. So, the less time between the brainwave pattern and associated feedback, the greater the ability of the feedback to create change in brainwave patterns. Thus, real-time EEG displays actual brainwave patterns on the screen, providing feedback with less than 1,000th of a second delay, resulting in the most effective type of EEG Neurofeedback.Brainwaves

Finally, Real-Time EEG improves much:

  • Anoxia (oxygen deprivation)
  • Attention Deficit Disorder
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity
  • Autism
  • Birth injuries
  • Brain injuries
  • Stroke
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Cluster headaches
  • Coma, Concussion
  • Down’s Syndrome
  • Dyslexia
  • Dystonia
  • Epilepsy
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Migraine headaches
  • Near drowning
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Whiplash

Hints for Creating Healthy Brains

Healthy Brain FunctionScientists once believed that the brain was a static organ. Therefore, once it developed, it could not change and could not create new neural pathways or new neurons; brain cells aged and died and were never replaced. So, if someone recovered from brain injury or stroke it was considered that damage to the area was not as extensive as first thought or another area of the brain took over the function. Read ahead for info about healthy brains.

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