6 Keys to Unlocking Your Brain’s Potential

Nov 1, 2023 | Blog Articles

Last century, it was believed that we were born with a certain number of neurons in our brain which stopped increasing when we reached around 7 years of age. Moreover, we were warned that we could potentially damage these precious brain cells through excessive partying and alcohol consumption.

Fast forward to this century, and our understanding of the brain has evolved significantly.

Today, we know that our brains are far more adaptable than we once believed. The brain is so adaptable that they call it neuroplasticity.

The hippocampus, a region deep within the brain, produces around 700-800 new neurons every day for the average person. And this is just the ‘average’ person, not one who meditates, sleeps soundly, exercises and has a healthy diet.

Remarkably, these fresh neurons are incredibly malleable, allowing us to forge new and creative connections within our brains and bodies. These new neurons gravitate to the part of the brain that we’re using – to strengthen the connections in that area.

But that’s not all – did you know that your gut lining contains a staggering 500 million neurons that engage in constant communication with your brain? In fact, more messages flow from these neurons to the brain than the other way around. The same with the heart. It has the same neurons as are in our brain, but 90% of the neuronal ‘traffic’ flows from the heart to the brain rather than the other way around.        

This newfound knowledge empowers us to grow wiser and enhance our capacity to retain valuable information, benefiting both our personal lives and the wellbeing of our loved ones. The good news is that maintaining and improving our memory and cognitive abilities as we age is entirely achievable.

However, a healthy brain doesn’t happen by chance; it requires a deliberate effort to create an environment that fosters optimal functioning. Here are some key ingredients for maintaining and enhancing brain health:

1. Prioritise Quality Sleep

Good quality sleep is essential for brain maintenance, consolidating memory, and produces a special ‘fertiliser’ for the hippocampus.

Your brain has its own lymphatic system – the glymphatic system – which switches on while you’re sleeping. Insufficient sleep means insufficient cleansing of the daily residue of toxins from your brain. A minimum of 7 hours and preferably 8 hours each night, is essential for your brain’s peak performance. A 20-minute rest after lunch increases your mental abilities by a whopping 36% – so there’s a lot to be said for the daily siesta!

2. Regular Exercise

Exercise plays a crucial role in keeping your brain well-oxygenated. Neurons rely on oxygen, and without it, they can deteriorate. Commit to regular exercise that you enjoy and can sustain.

3. Nourish Your Brain

Consume nutrient-dense foods, with an emphasis on quality fats, oils, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Eliminate foods laden with chemical additives, pesticides, and toxins. Choose a diet centred around whole, unprocessed foods, as they provide the vitality and health your body and brain need. Minimise sugar and excessive carbohydrate intake.

4. Cultivate Social Connections

People who have a close and loving group of friends, family, or community connections not only outlive other people, but they remain happier and more mentally capable as they age. Maintain or improve your social connections or find a hobby you enjoy that helps you interact with others with a similar passion.

5. Embrace Lifelong Learning

If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it and this is especially so with the brain. Be a life-long student. Encourage your curiosity and learn new information, skills and tools for living well on a daily basis.

6. Positive Outlook

Seeing the glass as half-full rather than half-empty makes a profound difference when it comes to maintaining a healthy brain. Be with people who are upbeat and are also striving to age well. If you’ve become negative about life or ageing, keep a gratitude book to train yourself to be on the lookout for things to be thankful for. Each night, jot 3-5 things for which you are grateful before going to sleep. Your brain gets a kick out of positive reinforcement!

How Quest For Life can help

Join us for a fascinating residential program Maintaining Your Memory & Ageing Healthily! Learn how to age healthily and enhance your memory, concentration, and life-long curiosity with the guidance of our expert facilitators in a nurturing encouraging environment.

Quest’s online courses can help you flourish

Quest for Life also has a range of Online Courses to help you flourish. A series of self-paced multimedia courses based on the latest research in neuroscience, epigenetic and evidence-based healthy lifestyle habits, so you can restore and replenish. See Online Courses.

Funding Options for Residential Programs

Self-Funding

Quest subsidises all privately or self-funded places to ensure the cost of our programs remains affordable to individuals. This allows us to reduce the fee from $4,400 to $2,800.

$2,200 Shared room (Early bird* $2,100 – must be paid 30 days in advance)
$2,800 Single room (Early bird* $2,700 – must be paid 30 days in advance)

Fees effective 1 July 2023.

Subsidies and Financial Help

Through generous grants, donations and fundraising, additional subsidies and financial help is available for a range of circumstances and anyone experiencing financial stress will be considered. We review each case individually and we do not means test. All applications are conducted via phone with a friendly member of the Programs intake team.

NDIS

Quest is a registered NDIS Provider. Residential Programs can be funded through plan-managed and self-managed NDIS plans.

DVA

We work with Department of Veteran Affairs (DVA) White Card or Gold Card holders to make applications to the DVA Health Approvals Board.

Worker’s Comp Insurance

Residential programs can be covered by workers compensation insurance on a case-by-case basis.

Call our Programs Advisers Today
1300 941 488