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It doesn’t take a blow to the head to injure the brain

You don’t have to receive a blow to the head to suffer from brain injury. In fact, you can even injure your brain while wearing a helmet. This is because brain tissue is very delicate — the consistency of soft butter or egg white — and floats inside a skull lined with hard ridges. Impacts to the body, falls, and neck injuries are all it takes to injure the brain, especially if they happen repeatedly.

Here are some ways you can sustain a brain injury without ever hitting your head:

Hard falls: When you fall your brain slams into one side of your skull and then the other. People who engage in activities that involve falling and crashing regularly (football, extreme sports, roller derby, etc.) should be aware of signs of brain injury, even if they wear a helmet.

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A functional neurology look at migraines and migraine relief

About one in four Americans suffer from migraines, or head pain that lasts four to 72 hours, in the United States and it’s a leading cause of disability. Fortunately, by understanding how metabolic disorders affect the brain, we can use functional neurology and neurochemistry to help many people with migraines find lasting and significant relief.

Many migraine sufferers feel they miss out on much of their lives. It’s hard to make commitments to social events, concerts, picnics, or other events because they never know when they’ll be felled by a migraine. Many migraine patients are also dependent on one or more drugs to function, and some of these drugs can cause rebound migraines!

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The importance of your biological clock with Hashimoto’s

The 2017 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded to researchers for their discoveries of molecular mechanisms that control circadian rhythm, our biological “clock.” This sleep-wake cycle not only helps us move between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals, it also plays an important role in regulating the immune system. When you have an autoimmune disease such as Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, a healthy circadian rhythm is important to dampen thyroid flares and to promote thyroid health.

Functions the circadian rhythm influences are:

  • Behavior
  • Sleep
  • Mood
  • Immunity
  • Brain function
  • Hormone levels
  • Metabolism

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Study shows diet tames Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism

A recent study showed a low-carbohydrate, whole foods diet low in inflammatory foods significantly decreases thyroid antibodies — the marker for autoimmune thyroid disease, or Hashimoto’s. Hashimoto’s occurs when the immune system attacks and destroys the thyroid gland; it is the cause of about 90 percent of hypothyroid cases.

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All those “non-concussions” add up to brain injury

You don’t have to have to receive a concussion diagnosis to have an injured brain. Small but repeated insults to the brain — falls, crashes, whiplash, being near explosions, landing on your tailbone — damage brain tissue. Even if the head is not directly hit, a blow or jolt to the body causes the brain to bang around in the skull and sustain damage.

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Autism often linked to early brain autoimmunity

Autism spectrum disorder rates have increased by about 80 percent in the last 15 years, and an estimated one in 45 children have autism. While both parents scramble and scientists search for answers, one factor increasingly shows up in research: An immune system gone awry attacking the brain — also called autoimmunity.

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