Subscribe Today! Please see below for a complete transcript of this episode. HOW TO STOP MUSCLE MASS LOSS AS YOU AGE, INVITEⓇ HEALTH PODCAST, EPISODE 629 Hosted by Amanda Williams, MD, MPH *Intro Music* InViteⓇ Health Podcast Intro: [00:00:04] Welcome to the InViteⓇ Health Podcast, …
Join Jerry Hickey, Ph., as he dives into studies about dry eye syndrome and talks about the supplements that can help
Please see below for a complete transcript of this episode.
An Anti-Aging Herb That Helps Protect The Brain – InViteⓇ Health Podcast, Episode 572
Hosted by Jerry Hickey, Ph.
InViteⓇ Health Podcast Intro: Welcome to the InViteⓇ Health Podcast, where our degreed healthcare professionals are excited to offer you the most important health and wellness information you need to make informed choices about your health. You can learn more about the products discussed in each of these episodes and all that InViteⓇ Health has to offer at www.invitehealth.com/podcast. First time customers can use promo code PODCAST at checkout for an additional 15% off your first purchase. Let’s get started!†
Jerry Hickey, Ph.: [00:00:41] We’re learning that you can protect your brain. You can foster a healthier brain. You can retain your memory. There are things you can do. And we’ll go over many of the day to day things you should do. Things that need to become a habit at the end of this podcast. But for now, I want to discuss how important it is to protect your brain. As you age, it becomes increasingly more difficult to protect your brain and protect your memory. It’s not something that’s written in stone that you’re going to lose your memory or develop Alzheimer’s. You can help prevent it, and you can strongly help prevent that for most people. So there are things you could do. So I want to talk about an herb today that’s native to Asia. It grows in countries like Tibet and Japan and Korea. It’s called Huperzia Serrata. It’s also called Club Moss, and it contains a substance and ingredient and alkaloid, if you want to place it on the correct chemical family, that helps protect and rejuvenate our memory cells, our neurons and our brain. So we’re going to get into that over this podcast.† [00:01:58]
[00:02:00] Hi, my name is Jerry Hickey, I’m a nutritional pharmacist. Welcome to my episode: protect Your Brain with this Herb. You can find all of our episodes for free wherever you listen to podcasts or go to invitehealth.com/podcast, please subscribe and leave us a review. You can also follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at InViteⓇ Health. So let’s get going.† [00:02:24]
[00:02:25] Let’s first describe our nerve cells in our brain as different kinds of nerve cells throughout the body. There’s nerve cells that detect heat and cold and pain, etc. with we’re talking now about our memory cells in our brain. They’re called neurons and it’s estimated we have almost 90 billion neurons. And they’re the building blocks of our nervous system and our brain. And they have two ends on one end, there’s the axon and you only have one of those and the axon transmits information to the next brain cell. Because, you know, information has to travel around the brain for you to use it. So there’s one axon per cell, but on the other end of the nerve cell, there’s the dendrite. There are many of these dendrite, they’re collecting the information. So from the previous nerve cells they’re collecting all those neurochemicals, we call them neurotransmitters. Information on the brain works through chemicals and electricity electrons. † [00:03:32]
[00:03:34] So the dendrites, a bunch of them are coming off the nerve cell. They’re collecting the info, they’re fishing for the info. Now the dendrite has something called dendritic spines that come off of it, these hairy projections. And these are incredibly important for learning and memory. When you learn something in the daytime, you haven’t really stored it yet. This really happens at night during a part of sleep called REM sleep, and we’ll get into that, we’ll get into the sleep cycle in a minute.† [00:04:06]
[00:04:08] So in the daytime, when you learn something, it’s placed in your hippocampus, the small little organ in the middle of your brain, somewhere near the middle of your brain. But that is vulnerable to memory loss and it can actually get overloaded. So at night, you take these memories that you learn today and you move it into long term storage sites. And this happens with the dendritic spines, they have flares, they get this increase in energy and they’re moving the information around. So if you don’t move this information around to the long term storage sites, it’s hard to learn the next day because your hippocampus can get overloaded. Apparently, according to the newest research. † [00:04:58]
[00:05:00] So at night, you go through a sleep cycle, which is about 90 to 120 minutes, depending on who you talk to and what study you read and there’s four parts, four segments to this sleep cycle, there’s four stages. There’s three non-REM sleep stages and one REM sleep stage. REM stands for Rapid Eye Movement. When you go into REM sleep. Your brain becomes very active and the other parts of the sleep cycle, your brain is really like slow. It’s slowed down a great deal, but during REM sleep, your eyes are moving rapidly. You’re dreaming. You might even have lucid dreams where you know you’re actually dreaming, that happens to me from time to time. You know you’re dreaming and you can manipulate the dream, which is amazing. But the REM sleep is really important. Your brain is very active, your muscles lose their tones, so you’re not moving around. And you’re moving the memories along. You’re storing them. So REM sleep is very important to your memory. And a substance called acetylcholine helps manage REM sleep. And that’s where the herb comes into play, because the herb helps restore the release of acetylcholine. Acetylcholine release declines with age in your brain, this affects your memory. We’ll get into that in a second.† [00:06:32]
[00:06:33] So REM sleep in children, babies go mostly through REM sleep. It’s very important for the development, the creation of the brain and the neurons and these dendritic spines, etc., any axons. But for us adults, we need it for memory and memory consolidation, you know, storing the memory, but healing these dendritic spines. So at night, when you go into REM sleep, you’re cutting away some of the spines, getting rid of some of the memories, and you’re protecting other parts. You need the acetylcholine to do that. And that’s your long term memory. By the way, we go REM sleep. The period for REM sleep increases as the night progresses, so in the second half of your night sleep, that’s when you do the lion’s share, your REM sleep. And it’s about 2 hours per night, that’s the estimate. So in REM sleep, we’re removing the memories we don’t need and we’re storing the memories that we do need that we feel are important. And once again, this is dependent on a brain chemical called acetylcholine. So what’s the problem with that? Well, acetylcholine levels drop with age. You need acetylcholine like there was this article in Nature Communications September 2020 that you need acetylcholine to learn, to remember, to store your memories, to heal your nerve cells in your brain, your thinking cells, but also for synaptic plasticity. Like when you’re learning something new, like even if you walk to the grocery store every day, in one way you have one route to the grocery store. But all of a sudden, you take a different route. You create a new pathway in the brain for learning that that synaptic plasticity is very important for the brain. That’s why I always tell older people like myself do puzzles, play chess, read good books, learn a musical instrument, paint, you know, I’m into acrylic painting, button up a brush up on some language you learn in high school. It’s all great for the brain. Talk to people, be social, very important for the brain! † [00:08:39]
[00:08:41] So you need the release of acetylcholine to maintain these newly formed dendritic spines for your memory, You need REM sleep for that, Acetylcholine is involved with both. But acetylcholine levels decline with age. It’s one reason why we become a little forgetful, a little absentminded. That’s a natural thing. It’s not natural to develop Alzheimer’s, but it is natural to develop a little bit of forgetfulness and absentmindedness. So once again, this is where the herb comes in. Who? Huperzia Serrata. First of all, importantly, Huperzia Serrata gets into the brain. It passes through a barrier called a blood brain barrier, a lot of things can get into the brain, even though they might be potentially good for your memory they don’t get into the brain adequately, this herb gets into your brain. And it slows down the breakdown of acetylcholine. Acetylcholine, once again really the most important neurotransmitter or brain chemical that’s naturally released for your memory and learning.† [00:09:43]
[00:09:45] So there is an enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine that’s called acetylcholinesterase. The Huperzia Serrata herb has an ingredient called Huperzine A that slows down this enzyme called acetylcholinesterase, and your acetylcholine starts to build up. It’s like a dam, you know, water builds up behind a dam. So the acetylcholine starts to go back to a younger concentration, your brain is becoming somewhat younger. Now, in a day, daytime acetylcholine interacts with GABA and glutamate to other neurotransmitters. To learn, the GABA opens up the neuron, the glutamate gives it the energy and the acetylcholine stores the memory, basically. And at night, oh, oh, for solving problems, let’s say you get off the highway in the wrong direction, you want to figure out how to get back on the highway. Once again, you release GABA, the same neurotransmitter involved with learning that opens up the brain cell, dopamine to help you solve and acetylcholine to help you solve the problem, and dopamine for you to act on your solution. So these neurotransmitters are very important for day to day function. † [00:11:01]
[00:11:03] So Huperzia Serrata helps keep more of your acetylcholine around, which helps with learning, remembering, healing your brain cells, it’s data for REM sleep, it’s data for arousal, getting aroused about something, it’s data for plasticity for your brain to adapt and learn, etc., it’s needed for motivation for you to feel motivated about something, it’s needed for you to be alert. So while the acetylcholine is dropping with age, when you take the Huperzia Serrata, don’t take too much, just a small amount and helps keep that acetylcholine around; now and Alzheimer’s I mentioned before there’s a severe drop in acetylcholine. † [00:11:41]
[00:11:42] In fact, a lot of drugs they give people with Alzheimer’s is to help restore some acetylcholine levels. So previously and PLOS One, PLOS One is this great journal that our tax dollars pay for and it’s meant to spread information throughout the world, useful scientific information, medical information around the world for free. For instance, a medical doctor and some tiny town in Ohio or Utah or upstate New York, they might not have access to all these great libraries of information like someone living near Duke University or Johns Hopkins, etc. would have. So they can look online at all these PLOS One journals for free and get great information. So previously in PLOS One journal, they spoke about Huperzine A and it has a beneficial effect on brain function in people with Alzheimer’s. So it really does mean something. Now, I don’t use it for Alzheimer’s. That’s really a neurologist who’s supposed to take care of someone with Alzheimer’s and or a neurological doctor or brain doctor. I just recommend it for keeping our brains younger and healthier, repairing our brains, maintaining our brains, maintaining our memory. So it really does, Huperzia Serrata really contributes to learning and memory and all different brain functions. There are other things which you could do for your brain and these are really important. Look at the Mind Diet, at the Rusk Institute over in Chicago. They’ve done a number of studies, it cuts your risk of Alzheimer’s by about 50%, which I’d say is pretty darn good. † [00:13:19]
[00:13:20] They took the Dash Diet, which is meant to help control your blood pressure and the Mediterranean Diet, which is a pattern of eating. These are not calorie counting diets, although when you, a calorie counting diets are meant for you to lose fat, although when you eat properly, you do tend to lose fat. So these are healthier diet and the MIND Diet tells you, hey, you’re better off eating this and avoiding that. A couple of things you should add to the MIND Diet mushrooms, green tea and cocoa because they’re really good for your brain. So the MIND Diet, which has a lot of vegetables in it and green leafy vegetables are very important for the brain, like spinach and broccoli and bok choy and broccoli rabe, etc., fruits, especially berries like blackberries and blueberries and raspberries and strawberries, green tea, beans, mushrooms. They’re all really good for your brain, exercise, excellent for the brain. † [00:14:19]
[00:14:20] I love exercise, I like to be active, my body needs it. I just love it, my activities, of course, I can’t do every one every day but Pickelball, I recently started Pickleball, which is a lot of fun. It’s kind of like 80% tennis and 20% ping pong. It’s a smaller court, you know. I’m 68, so I don’t want to run around that huge court anymore for tennis, it’s just it’s easier on your knees. You don’t have these aggressive serves because of the way you have to serve, you have to serve underhand. The ball is safer, I mean, it’s just a better game for people my age. So pickleball, I like to swim, I like to hike and walk, I like to kayak, ride my bike or lift weights, love to lift weights. All these things are good forms of exercise, I intend on learning tai chi in fact I’m probably gonna take yoga classes. So I do a lot of different physical activities everyday, gardening, believe me, the way you garden, that’s a physical activity. † [00:15:17]
[00:15:18] So exercise, really important. Vegetables and fruit, green tea, mushrooms, make sure your legumes are indeed like your beans. So the MIND diet. Challenge your brain, chess, reading good books, learning something new, going and reviewing a language you learned in high school, learning a musical instrument. All these things are great for your brain. Culinary spices are great for the brain, like oregano and turmeric. Avoid the soda, avoid the sugar, avoid the saturated fat, like in butter, have some fish. Nutritional brain helpers, fish oils, especially the DHEA component. † [00:16:03]
[00:16:05] A well absorbed turmeric, because turmeric itself, the curry herb is very poorly absorbed, so a well absorbed turmeric to several of them out there. B vitamins. And I always tell people, make sure you get the activated form of folic acid. Folic acid, a synthetic, that’s what’s in most B complexes, that’s what’s in most multivitamins. A lot of people don’t adequately convert that into the active form. Methyltetrahydrafolate, so I always tell people, get the methyltetrahydrafolate form. It’s really important for the brain that lowers a substance in a brain called homocysteine, which is kind of like a solvent, a destructive chemical that you can make in your brain. If homocysteine levels get too elevated, it’s damaging to the back of the eye. It’s it’s involved with depression, and it’s involved with Alzheimer’s disease. So you want the active methyltetrahydrafolate form of folic acid. So B-vitamins important, fish oils, especially the DHA is important. There are other nutrients that are helpful and like I said, a well absorbed turmeric. † [00:17:03]
[00:17:03] So thanks for listening to this episode. You can find all of our episodes for free wherever you listen to podcasts. Or go to invitehealth.com/podcast and please subscribe and leave a review. You can also find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at InViteⓇ Health. I want to thank you for listening to today’s podcast episode and this is and I hope to see you next time on a future episode. This is Jerry Hickey signing off. † [00:17:03]
Are you on your computer, playing Xbox, or watching TV? The Blue Blockers will help to enhance your brain and eye fatigue. Listen now to learn more!
If you’re feeling like you can’t focus or that your mind is fuzzy, you may be suffering from brain fog. Here’s what you need to know.
Please see below for a complete transcript of this episode.
Sexual Dysfunction, Part 1 – InViteⓇ Health Podcast, Episode 504
Hosted by Amanda Williams, MPH
InVite Health Podcast Intro: Welcome to the InViteⓇ Health Podcast, where our degreed healthcare professionals are excited to offer you the most important health and wellness information you need to make informed choices about your health. You can learn more about the products discussed in each of these episodes and all that InViteⓇ Health has to offer at www.invitehealth.com/podcast. First time customers can use promo code PODCAST at checkout for an additional 15% off your first purchase. Let’s get started!
Amanda Williams, MPH: [00:00:40] Everyone’s heard the stories about low sex drive, low libido, erectile dysfunction. So what are we really talking about? We’re talking about sexual dysfunction, and today I want to highlight some of the key statistics and causative reasons. And then in Part 2, I’m going to really get specific with certain medications that we know are directly linked and you will be absolutely astonished by how many medications are linked to sexual dysfunction in both men and women. So I’m Amanda Williams, MD, MPH, and let’s get right to it. Let’s talk about sexual dysfunction.† [00:01:17]
[00:01:18] Let’s first talk a little bit about the statistics when it comes to sexual dysfunction. Now, according to the Cleveland Clinic, and you can look at a lot of different statistical data out there, that sexual dysfunction, to some degree, affects over 40% of women and over 30% of men. Now we know that this is a major problem because I know that this is in many regards taboo to talk about it and people don’t like to to bring up the conversation of sex. It’s interesting because you will find that men are more likely to speak with their physician than women when it comes to sexual dysfunction. So looking at stats coming from University of Michigan, we know that when you think about the topic of sex, this is a very important emotional action, and University of Michigan kind of dove into this in a a bit more detail, talking about the impact of sex on emotional well-being and finding that over 76% of adults over the age of 65 agreed that sex is a very important part of their romantic relationship at any age. So many times people think that as you get older, for some reason, sex is no longer important, and we know that this is certainly not the case based off of all of the the data that has been taken through various different studies and, and research.† [00:02:56]
[00:02:57] So what is sexual dysfunction and why is it that it affects so many men and women? Well, you can look at different types of sexual dysfunction. You can look at just a general lack of interest in sex. You can look at issues with maybe you have an interest, but you have a problem when it comes to becoming physically aroused. So that’s the arousal disorder component of sexual dysfunction. We can look at issues that usually affects women, and that is painful intercourse. So obviously the interest is going to go down. So we know that there are many different ways in which sexual dysfunction can arise. We can certainly look at the many different physical causes when you look at diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure. And of course, in Part 2, I’m going to talk about all of the different medications, and this, like I said, it’s absolutely fascinating when you see how many different drugs can actually impact this. So many people, you know, think about just solely erectile dysfunction and men and think about, you know, Viagra and Cialis. But there are many other components when it comes to this and seeing the clinical research, and I’ve done a lot of independent studying on, on different research trials and studies when it comes to this. And it’s really interesting that many of the studies overlook the the drug component to this, the implication that a medication that someone is taking may actually have. And so this is why I wanted to talk about this in some some detail today.† [00:04:53]
[00:04:53] So when we think about sexual dysfunction in women, we know that this is generally going to be more pronounced than in men. Now, oftentimes people can look at hormonal fluctuations in women going through menopause and then, you know, libido goes down post-menopausally in many women and you have to look at the hormonal connection as to why that is. Well, we can look at the estrogen component to that and we can look at issues with vaginal dryness and painful intercourse. So there’s a lot of different reasons as to why female sexual dysfunction seems to be more prevalent than in males. But, nevertheless, we know that this is common in both men and women. So how exactly it develops over time is going to vary from one person to the next. Like I said, you can have issues with hormonal imbalances. You can have issues when it comes to a particular chronic disease state that perhaps that you are dealing with. And at the end of the day, it certainly can have an impact on someone’s overall sense of well-being. And there’s a lot of different emotions that go with this. There can be embarrassment. You certainly hear about this quite often in men who are experiencing issues with vaginal dryness.† [00:06:15]
[00:06:16] But we have to look at how hormones, antioxidants, perhaps the lack of nitric oxide released for proper vascular blood flow, how all of these things, we can look at our neurotransmitters and see how those are implicated. So it’s multimodal and looking at key nutrients that we know can be beneficial. You can look at something such as maca root extract and certainly seeing how that can help to support the neurotransmitters in the brain and help the body better manage stressful situations, whether that be emotional or physical, which can certainly help to improve on the side of libido, for example. So looking at erectile dysfunction, and as I mentioned, men are more likely to go in and speak to their physician in regards to this.† [00:07:13]
[00:07:13] Now we can certainly look at erectile dysfunction being clearly linked to issues with hormonal status in men, so lack of testosterone. We can look at diabetes being a really big problem. We can certainly look at cardiovascular issues such as hypertension, and we can also look at underlying components when it comes to anxiety, when it comes to stress. So there’s, like I said, it’s multimodal, and it’s usually not just one thing, it’s many different things. So the approach to managing sexual dysfunction, whether that be in women or in men, has to usually be multimodal as well. And you can look at even the Mayo Clinic, they talk about the utilization of arginine, which is the very important amino acid when it comes to the activation of nitric oxide synthase, which will help with the release of nitric oxide. And I believe on the Mayo Clinic website for erectile dysfunction, they advise upwards of 5000mg of arginine for men who are experiencing erectile dysfunction. And the point of that is to really try to enhance the the blood flow to achieve and maintain an erection.† [00:08:26]
[00:08:27] But we can look at other things, too. We can look at maca root extract once again. There are many different nutrients, and so you can look at the Men’s Edge formulation, which I always mention even though the name is Men’s Edge, this is a wonderful formulation for both men and women because the nutrients that are contained within the Men’s Edge formulation have been studied in both men and women. And so I think that the name sometimes makes people think, “Oh, well, maybe I’m a female and that’s not geared towards me.” That certainly is not the case. You can look at icariin, for example, which is contained in the Men’s Edge formulation, and we know that this has certainly been studied in the setting of women and sexual dysfunction. We can look at, of course, Tribulus extract and seeing the benefit in both men and women. Certainly looking at the, the maca root extract. So there are many nutrients contained within the Men’s Edge formulation that certainly are cross-functional when it comes to addressing sexual dysfunction in both men and women.† [00:09:36]
[00:09:38] You know, basic nutrients certainly can make a difference to if we have at a cellular level, a deficiency in, you know, key vitamins, minerals. These too can also have implications when it comes the exacerbation of sexual dysfunction in both men and women. So we know that this is very common. We know that there are many different approaches to this. I always encourage people to make sure that they have their comprehensive hormone levels tested. So whether male or female, you know, do the full panel. Look and see what’s going on with your estradiol. Look and see what’s going on with your free testosterone, your DHEA, your sex hormone binding globulin. Oftentimes, you may find that there is a issue in terms of the conversion of a particular hormone, and there may be a nutrient that would be incredibly supportive to that. So DHEA is kind of a big one in women. When DHEA levels start to plummet, the reestablishment of DHEA can help to restore some balance when it comes to like a positive feedback loop back up to testosterone as well as estrogen.† [00:10:49]
[00:10:50] So there are many different ways to which you can approach this. But the more that you know, the better off you are. So is it hormonal? Is it a mood disorder? Is it an issue where it is a pharmaceutical implication, whether it’s the medication that you’re taking, that’s actually creating this. And so we know many women deal with this, we know many men deal with this. This is a significant issue that many do not want to talk about, but certainly can have a lot of impact on your overall sense of well-being. And as we grow older, I always say the point is to age gracefully, so we don’t want to create in a particular situation to which we can manage it, but yet we just ignore it and that has effect on our emotional well-being. So while it is a topic that many people don’t like to talk about, I find it to be incredibly important. And that’s why I wanted to talk about that today. So that is just kind of the basic statistics. We know it’s relevant. We know it’s prevalent and we know that there are many things that we can be doing for this. So in Part 2, I’m going to get into the full list of the many medications. Like I said, you will be absolutely astonished by how many medications can create problems when it comes to sexual dysfunction. So make sure that you tune in to Part 2, where I’m going to list all of the many medication.† [00:12:29]
[00:12:30] So for today, I just want to thank you so much for tuning in to the InViteⓇ Health Podcast. Remember, you can find all of our episodes for free wherever you listen to podcasts or by visiting invitehealth.com/podcast. Do make sure that you subscribe and you leave us a review. You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @invitehealth and we will see you next time for Part 2 of sexual dysfunction.† [00:12:30]