Lobes Of The Brain And What They Control
Each brain hemisphere has four sections, called lobes: frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital. Each lobe controls specific functions.
- Frontal lobe. The largest lobe of the brain, located in the front of the head, the frontal lobe is involved in personality characteristics, decision-making and movement. Recognition of smell usually involves parts of the frontal lobe. The frontal lobe contains Brocas area, which is associated with speech ability.
- Parietal lobe. The middle part of the brain, the parietal lobe helps a person identify objects and understand spatial relationships . The parietal lobe is also involved in interpreting pain and touch in the body. The parietal lobe houses Wernickes area, which helps the brain understand spoken language.
- Occipital lobe. The occipital lobe is the back part of the brain that is involved with vision.
- Temporal lobe. The sides of the brain, temporal lobes are involved in short-term memory, speech, musical rhythm and some degree of smell recognition.
Dreams Are Believed To Be A Combination Of Imagination Physiological Factors And Neurological Factors
The limbic system in the mid-brain deals with emotions in both waking and dreaming and includes the amygdala, which is mostly associated with fear and is especially active during dreams. Dreams are proof that your brain is working even when you are sleeping. The average human has about 4-7 dreams per night.
Maintain Regularity In Digestion
Sufficient hydration keeps things flowing along your gastrointestinal tract10 Things About Probiotics For Gut and Brain Health and helps prevent constipation. Water helps dissolve waste particles and passes them smoothly through your digestive tract. If youre dehydrated, your body pulls water from your stools to maintain hydration, leaving your colon dry and making it more difficult to pass waste.
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The Importance Of Water For Brain Function
Each cell in the brain requires a tremendous amount of energy to function properly. Brain cells are sending information to other cells in your body so that they can do what they are supposed to do. Every movement you make, whether voluntary or involuntary starts in your brain. The brain is sending signals 24/7 to keep things running smoothly.
These vital activities require energy. And water plays an important role in providing that energy to the brain.
Our brain just works better when it is well-hydrated. Well-hydrated brains function faster, with more clarity and greater creativity.
But the brain has no way to store water, so it is important to maintain hydration throughout the day.
We are continuously dehydrating. We lose water through breathing and sweating. And we breathe all night . So, when you wake up in the morning you will be starting the day with a water deficit.
Start the day with a glass of water to re-hydrate.
Anatomy Of The Brain And Spine
Learn more about the anatomy and the functions of the brain and spine
- Information and support
- Anatomy of the brain and spine
The brain and spine are vital to keep the body alive and functioning. Everything we do depends on the messages that are sent from the brain, along the spinal cord and on to the rest of the body.
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You’ll Think And Focus Better
Water helps your brain cells communicate with each other, clears out toxins and waste that impairs brain function, and carries nutrients to your brain. This all falls apart if your fluid levels drop.
Staying hydrated has been linked to:
Faster decision making and improved performance on cognitive tests
Better concentration and enhanced short-term memory
Higher test scores in an educational context
Improved focus and decreased mental fatigue
Stronger cognitive functioning across the board, including more alertness, less confusion, and even improved learning
The Neuroscience Of Thirst: How Your Brain Tells You To Look For Water
figures by Jovana Andrejevic
Youve undoubtedly experienced the feeling of thirst: its a slight itch in the back of your throat, a distracting urge to turn away from whatever youre doing and find something to drink. It drives you to guzzle water on hot days and to drink something along with your meals. Our need for water is as omnipresent and critical as our need for food or oxygenits an essential cog that keeps our bodies working normally. The craving to pick up a beverage when were feeling parched might feel intuitive, but our bodies rely on an intricate set of biological processes to make sure we stay properly hydrated, as consuming both too much or too little water can lead to problems.
What Is Water Intoxication
The definition of water intoxication is: A lowered blood concentration of sodium that occurs due to the consumption of excess water without adequate replacement of sodium.
Water intoxication is referred to in a few different ways, including: hyponatremia, water poisoning, hyperhydration, or excessive water intake. All of these terms describe the same serious health condition that is caused by an electrolyte imbalance specifically having too much water in the blood in relation to sodium.
Hyponatremia means low sodium levels in the blood . Water intoxication, or hyponatremia, is the opposite of hypernatremia, the condition that occurs due to dehydration .
The Causes of Water Intoxication:
Because its preventable, you might be wondering in what types of situations is water intoxication most likely to occur? Studies have found that this condition commonly develops in hospitalized patients and those with mental disturbances, although it can also affect people who are otherwise healthy. Water intoxication has been described in several different clinical situations:
Alcohol And The Brain
Long-term alcoholism can lead to a number of health problems, including brain damage.
It is not, however, as simple as saying that drinking alcohol kills brain cells this is a myth. The reasons for this are complicated.
If a woman drinks too much alcohol while pregnant, it can affect the brain development of the fetus, and even cause fetal alcohol syndrome.
The brains of babies with this condition may be smaller and often contain fewer brain cells. This may lead to difficulties with learning and behavior.
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The Consequences Of Drinking Too Much Water
Your body works to maintain normal function despite the regular variations in fluid levels that you experience throughout the day. The first way your body manages water overload is by simply getting rid of the excess fluid through urine. This means if you drink too much fluid, you will balance out your body’s fluid by urinating more. For the most part, your body can keep up if you repeatedly drink more water than you need.
Recommendations For Improved Brain Function
Water provides essential energy to the brain, keeps the nerve signals going, delivers nutrients to the brain, and removes toxins. We need to be drinking enough water daily to keep the brain fueled and energized for optimum function.
To start your day off right for optimal brain function, I recommend drinking 12 to 16 ounces of water as soon as you wake up.
Always keep a bottle of filtered water near you throughout the day, especially if you have a job that requires a lot of mental activity. Drinking water regularly will help to keep your brain fueled, oxygenated, and energized.
Many people think, like I use to, that they can drink soda, coffee, milk, or juice instead of water and get the same level of hydration. This is simply not true.
Adding super green liquids or powders to your water can improve body alkalinity and enhance brain function.
The most powerful super green powder that we have used to improve memory focus and concentration is the E3Live liquid and powder brain food. You will notice a difference when adding this amazing supplement to your water.
Bottom line, if you want your brain to function well, receiving and sending signals to the rest of your body, make sure it receives the water it needs.
In addition, the type of water you drink is extremely important. We recommend filtered drinking water over tap, bottled, distilled, or reverse osmosis water.
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What Does Water Do For Your Body
Between about 55% to about 78% of your body is made of water. Newborn babies are about 78% water, a year-old baby is 65%, adult men are about 60% and adult women are about 55%. Your brain is made up of 73% water, and so is your heart. Your bones are 31% water, muscles and kidneys are 79% and your skin is 64%. A whopping 83% of water makes up your lungs.
- Aid digestion and get rid of waste.
- Work your joints. Water lubricates them.
- Make saliva .
- Balance your bodys chemicals. Your brain needs it to create hormones and neurotransmitters.
- Deliver oxygen all over your body.
- Cushion your bones.
- Regulate your body temperature.
Act as a shock absorber for your brain, your spinal cord and, if youre pregnant, your fetus.
Water is important to your body, especially in warm weather. It keeps your body from overheating. When you exercise, your muscles generate heat. To keep from burning up, your body needs to get rid of that heat. The main way the body discards heat in warm weather is through sweat. As sweat evaporates, it cools the tissues beneath. Lots of sweating reduces the body’s water level, and this loss of fluid affects normal bodily functions. Drink water!
Hydration Is Key: Water Your Brain
- Majid Fotuhi
Dehydration can cause some serious negative effects on parts of the body, and the brain is no exception. When you dont drink enough throughout the day your brain functions at a lower level. Its important to prioritize hydration for both your body and brain.
Whether were just busy, lazy, or simply thinking we are drinking enough, a lot of people probably arent getting the right amount of water for their body and brain to function at its highest potential.
According to the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, even just 2% dehydration takes a toll on our brain function. Here are a few symptoms you may experience when you are not as hydrated as you should be:
- Memory loss
Dr. Caroline Edmonds and her team performed a study testing the affects of dehydration on brain performance and mood. They found that those who drank water before performing a cognitive test had 14% increased reaction time compared to those who did not drink water. In addition to their decreased cognitive performance, those who were dehydrated reported being more confused and tense than those who drank water.
According to the Mayo Clinic, infants and children, older adults, people with chronic illnesses, and people who work or exercise outside are at greater risk of dehydration and should take extra caution to make sure they are getting enough fluids each day.
Here are some tips for reaching your water quota each day:
- Mon – Fri: 8 am – 8 pmSat – Sun: 8 am – 6 pm
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People Aren’t Fully Right
Have you ever heard someone describe themselves as either left-brained or right-brained? This idea stems from the popular notion that people are either dominated by their right or left brain hemispheres. According to this idea, people who are “right-brained” are believed to be more creative and expressive, while those who are “left-brained” are positioned as more analytical and logical.
While experts do recognize that there is lateralization of brain function , no one is fully right-brained or left-brained.
In fact, we tend to do better at tasks when we engage the entire brain, even for things that are typically associated with a certain area of the brain.
The Cerebellum’s Balancing Act
Next up is the cerebellum. The cerebellum is at the back of the brain, below the cerebrum. It’s a lot smaller than the cerebrum. But it’s a very important part of the brain. It controls balance, movement, and coordination .
Because of your cerebellum, you can stand upright, keep your balance, and move around. Think about a surfer riding the waves on his board. What does he need most to stay balanced? The best surfboard? The coolest wetsuit? Nope he needs his cerebellum!
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Dehydration
Even a small amount of dehydrationas little as 1%can affect your cognitive function.
While everybody is different, some of the most common warning signs that you’re dehydrated include:
Dark yellow urine, or very infrequent trips to the bathroom
Dry eyes, dry skin or a dry mouth
Mood changes and mood swings, including anxiety, stress and irritability
Fluctuations in your energy levels, including a general sense of fatigue and exhaustion, or higher levels of mental fatigue, lack of mental alertness, etc.
The Causes Of Dehydration
Dehydration can occur for simple reasons such as not drinking enough water because you are sick or too busy, or because you dont have access to safe drinking water while traveling or hiking.
Dehydration can also occur after suffering from severe diarrhea or vomiting. It can cause a huge loss of water and electrolytes, in a short amount of time
Fever may also cause dehydration. Generally, the higher your fever is, the more dehydrated you may be.
Excessive sweating is often the cause of dehydration in athletes and people who exercise vigorously, and who dont replace the fluids they lost.
Certain medical conditions like undiagnosed diabetes, or prescription drugs like blood pressure medications and diuretics can cause dehydration because they make you urinate more.
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Why Does Your Brain Need You To Drink Enough Water
All of your cells need water, so your brain is not the only part of you that is affected by not getting enough of it. But being the control center for the rest of your body, having a poorly hydrated brain will make your day a lot worse than it would be if you get enough fluid to drink.
Dehydration of the brains tissues can cause:
* Frustration and negative mood
Researchers studying dehydration of the brain found that not getting enough water causes shrinkage of brain tissue and this particularly affects the ventricular volume of the brain, which is where the cerebral-spinal fluid is contained. The cerebral-spinal fluid is important for the brain to get nutrients and to flush waste away from the brain as well.
When you dont get enough water, the study showed that you will feel like it takes more energy to do the same mental task that you could do if you were fully hydrated. This same effort is something that the study researchers could see on an MRI scan of the brain and the study also verified that the brain weighed less when dehydrated.
Brain Activity Can Power A Small Light Bulb
When you are awake, your brain generates about 12-25 watts of electricity which is enough to power a small light bulb. The brain also works fast. The information going from your arms/legs to your brain travels at a speed of 150-260 miles per hour. The brain consumes glucose from the body to produce this amount of the energy.
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Brain Stem Keeps You Breathing And More
Another brain part that’s small but mighty is the brain stem. The brain stem sits beneath the cerebrum and in front of the cerebellum. It connects the rest of the brain to the spinal cord, which runs down your neck and back. The brain stem is in charge of all the functions your body needs to stay alive, like breathing air, digesting food, and circulating blood.
Part of the brain stem’s job is to control your involuntary muscles the ones that work automatically, without you even thinking about it. There are involuntary muscles in the heart and stomach, and it’s the brain stem that tells your heart to pump more blood when you’re biking or your stomach to start digesting your lunch. The brain stem also sorts through the millions of messages that the brain and the rest of the body send back and forth. Whew! It’s a big job being the brain’s secretary!
Boosts Your Concentration Level
Recent studies also indicate that drinking enough water keeps you more attentive and alert. Zip Water conducted an experiment involving two gamers who competed against each other in a virtual game of ping pong. Rather than use controllers, the players were set up with EEG headsets, which enabled them to navigate the ball using mind control. In the end, the dehydrated player performed considerably worse than his opponent because of fatigue and a decline in focus.
Debunking The 10% Myth
- Ph.D., Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern University
- B.A., Chemistry, Johns Hopkins University
- B.A., Cognitive Science, Johns Hopkins University
You may have heard that humans only use 10 percent of their brain power, and that if you could unlock the rest of your brainpower, you could do so much more. You could become a super genius, or acquire psychic powers like mind reading and telekinesis. However, there is a powerful body of evidence debunking the 10 percent myth. Scientists have consistently shown that humans use their entire brain throughout each day.
Despite the evidence, the 10 percent myth has inspired many references in the cultural imagination. Films like “Limitless” and “Lucy” depict protagonists who develop godlike powers thanks to drugs that unleash the previously inaccessible 90 percent of the brain. A 2013 study showed that about 65 percent of Americans believe the trope, and a 1998 study showed that a full third of psychology majors, who focus on the workings of the brain, fell for it.