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How to Improve Brain Health for Cancer Patients

By Jeannine Walston  |   Mar - 2 - 2016  |  


The brain is a forceful temple with many functions. Benefits occurred for me through my brain tumor journey—as well as other cancer patients—by skillfully addressing challenges from treatment, side effects, and the overwhelm. Research has also connected the dots to explain specific strategies that affect the body—and brain—into success.
Here are only some tricks of the trade to improve brain health.

Eat
Eating healthy organic foods improves brain health; some can kill cancer cells. While eating is not always the same for each individual—including with cancer treatment—it’s essential to create a plan. Some choices include vegetables like kale, broccoli, and spinach; other vegetables in the rainbow; avocados; nuts; garlic and onions; oils; herbs and spices like turmeric and curry and ginger; blueberries; and, other foods that support brain health delivering a spectrum of benefits. Reduce or eliminate sugar, dairy, meats, and gluten also reduces some problems and instead increases personal power.

Sleep
Overall, the brain needs between 7 and 8 hours of quality sleep, but cancer patients can require more. Abnormal sleep patterns alter hormones that influence cancer cells. Melatonin functions as a key hormone impacting sleep and awake cycles. Sleep is improved by melatonin supplements at certain levels. Studies also indicate that melatonin has worked against cancer.

Supplements
Along with melatonin, these supplements are included in a long list of products to support brain health. Ashwagandha acts as an adaptogen or stress fighter, reduces anxiety and depression, and increases cognitive skills through neuroprotective effects. Rhodiola reduces stress and improves cognitive functions like memory and concentration. Turmeric helps to reduce inflammation, diminishes cancer cell growth, creates vibrancy, and many other benefits. Be aware that it’s best to use supplements made by high-quality manufacturers and at appropriate dose levels.

Meditation
People affected by cancer can experience calm and new insights through meditation. That includes clarity, positive emotions, ease, empowered functions, and expanded brain strength. Here is one exercise with meditation. Try sitting in a comfortable position. Feel your feet on the ground. Breathe and feel your body. Close your eyes and take another breath. Focus on your breath. Sit for 5 minutes, then 10 minutes, and 20 minutes. Imagery, visualization, sounds like “Om” and other mantras can also be incorporated with meditation.

Exercise
Depending upon the type of exercise you do based on what you enjoy and where you are in your journey—if it’s short or long with basics or intensity—many dynamics shift for your body and brain to feel strong. Studies show that exercise provides benefits against cancer and boosts neurotransmitters of dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins increasing energy, focus, behavior, and mood. Dancing is also a powerful remedy, including to cultivate positive emotions and support some brain functions.

Music
Listening to certain types of music can shift the psyche into improved wellness, balance in the nervous system, and other internal and external constructs, including brain health. Some classical music can bring peace with ease, certain drums can enhance brain function and spiritual experiences, mystical music can shift and strengthen awareness in brain health as well as life, and nature music can relax the brain to help balance the nervous system. Being in nature also shifts the nervous system to feel better.

Body-Mind-Spirit-Social-Environment
The whole person—through integrative cancer care for the whole person—includes many pieces in the puzzle toward finding new solutions into thriving. A commitment to learning about new information and engaging in actions delivers major results. Further vibrancy might be calling you, and movement in the quest happens from experts guiding you through your journey.

Transformation happens here. Engaging with an Integrative Cancer Coach can positively impact your brain health and cancer journey. Explore with me now.