Research reveals brain-food failure

Britons are feeling the impact of brain-food failure due to poor eating patterns, new research from Neubria reveals

Neubria, the company manufacturing a range of nootropic supplements to support brain health, said a new research poll of 1,506 people has confirmed the claim that Britons are feeling the impact of brain-food failure due to poor eating patterns.

The Neubria research poll revealed two-thirds (65%) of adults do not feel cognitively sharp, half (51%) worry about their long-term brain health. Three out of five (57%) report deteriorating memory.

It’s well known that specific nutrients such as B vitamins, iron and omega-3 fatty acids are important for brain health. However, the latest science suggests that around 22 vitamins and minerals, plus a number of other nutrients and botanicals play an important part in maintaining cognition and brain health and wellbeing.

Experts believe the need for good oxygenation and first-rate fuel means the human brain is probably the tissue most vulnerable to long-term nutritional imbalances.

That’s a problem because the Government’s National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) shows that millions of people are at risk of across-the-board nutrient shortfalls and deficiencies because of poor eating patterns.

The human brain is probably the tissue most vulnerable to long-term nutritional imbalances

“Our ageing population and greater willingness to talk about mental health are driving the search for new strategies to support brain health, and a lot of studies are now focusing on the role of polyphenols,"  Dr Tim Bond, a natural health expert, chemist and polyphenol researcher, commented.

Bond said this plant compounds have a broad spectrum of beneficial activity and there is already compelling evidence demonstrating that they reduce cardiovascular and metabolic disease, which are known drivers for dementia and other cognitive issues.

The power of polyphenols

Experts now know the power of polyphenols goes far beyond these mechanisms. Dr Tim Bond explained: “There is evidence they also help repair damaged brain cells and activate neurogenesis; the generation of new brain cells.”

Professor David Nieman concurs: “In today’s modern way of living, as a society, we have lost our bearings when it comes to healthy eating patterns. Much remains to be learned about the potential effects of polyphenols from fruits vegetables, and other plant foods in promoting health and preventing chronic diseases."

Nieman pointed to recent epidemiologic studies, using improved assessment techniques, support that high versus low dietary polyphenol intake predicts reduced risk for neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, obesity, and early death from all causes. "Now, a more general hypothesis holds that the phytochemicals plus adequate amounts of nutrients support more optimal function of organs such as the liver and heart, but also the brain,” he said.

Neubria has released these findings following the launch of a new range of brain-health supplements.

The new offering is made of proven polyphenol-rich botanicals and a wide range of vitamins, minerals and nutrients in six unique formulations designed to tackle everyday brain health, cognitive and wellbeing challenges.

Supplements born out of a rugby brain injury

Neubria is the brainchild of Jonny Kennedy, founder and CEO, who was a rugby player before he was forced to quit the game after a series of concussions.

Kennedy, who competed at international level for the England under-16 and under-18 teams and Scotland’s under-21 team, and then signed for Sale Sharks, had to retire in 2011 when he was only 21.

After three concussions in three consecutive games, cognitive tests showed a dramatic decline from the baseline readings taken at the start of the season. “I wasn’t really aware of it, but my family noticed I was slower, and not quite right," Kennedy said.

Recent epidemiologic studies support that high versus low dietary polyphenol predicts reduced risk for neurodegenerative diseases

A passion for science, Kennedy's experience of concussive injury and the suicides of two rugby pals who had retired around the same time had prompted him to begin searching for strategies to support brain health which were drawn from nature but also supported by evidence.

His journey of discovery took him to Cambridge University, where he met Julia Gottwald a neuroscientist and author who uses advanced and state of the art functional MRI (fMRI) scanning to explore the workings of our brain.

Kennedy then linked up with Mike Wakeman, a clinical pharmacist and Professor David Nieman, both with a fascination for botanicals and nutritional medicine.

Together, they trawled through reams of scientific data to identify nutrients and plant compounds which help support brain function, and explore the most effective combinations to tackle a range of issues including low energy, poor concentration and disturbed sleep.