I’ve been thinking about my brain a lot lately and what I can do to help it stay strong and healthy. In about half of all people with Lupus, the disease attacks the brain. I now know, of course, that I am one of those people.
In the last 24 hours, I have found myself scouring through magazine articles, blogs, recipes, scientific studies, and books for strategies in keeping my brain in tip-top shape. My brain needs to be “buffed up” to stop those pesky lupus anti-bodies from directly damaging my brain cells, not to mention potential stroke and vasculitis (inflammation of the blood vessel wall) or God forbid another bout of lupus cerebritis. One of the most important discoveries I made during my obsessive brain research during my months off work was that the brain is miraculous in it’s ability to heal itself. A lot of that power can come from a person’s conscious effort in healing and enhancing the function of their own brain, of understanding what is happening within the organ itself and taking steps to address it. I am choosing to believe that this power is accessible to me, a belief that is integral in giving me the strength and tools to get through the emotional and physical trauma of future flares.
After spending a few days in snowy paradise at a lakeside lodge, I was curious about the scientific studies on nature’s effect on the brain. This is what I found:
“Diagram showing the tranquil brain. Using brain scanning that measures brain activity, researchers showed that the natural, tranquil scenes caused different brain areas to become `connected´ with one another – indicating that these brain regions were working in sync. However, the non-tranquil motorway scenes disrupted connections within the brain. (Credit: Image courtesy of University of Sheffield).”
We know this intuitively, of course, but it’s always nice when the science and the heart line up, don’t you think?