Our brain is a complex organ, and we still have much to learn about how it works. What we do know, however, is that our brain undergoes changes as we age, changes that can affect its ability to function normally.
While some of these changes are due to the natural consequences of ageing, we may develop conditions that can also affect our brain. According to Prof Yuen Kah Hay, our brain consumes more energy than any other organ in the body, roughly 20% of our total energy requirements. Our brain is nourished by a massive network of blood vessels. “Therefore, any damage to the blood vessels can lead to degeneration of brain tissues, possibly leading to neurodegenerative disorders such as cognitive dysfunction, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease,” he says. He adds that hypertension, hyperlipidaemia and diabetes are just some of the conditions that can damage the fine blood vessels in our brain.
Controlling the risk factors of such conditions would be very helpful to maintain our brain health, and thus, Prof Yuen recommends living a healthy lifestyle comprising a balanced diet and regular physical activity. If we need a little extra help, neuroprotective supplements such as tocotrienols can be helpful.