Benefits of brain training for first responders

Recently we have been working with groups of first responders and helping them set up programs for improving cognitive reserve. While most of these groups have programs for maintaining physical fitness, it has only been recently that they have determined the need for maintaining brain fitness. Stressful situations, long periods without sleep and exposure to traumatic events on a routine basis can work overtime to deplete cognitive reserves. Similar to physical training for keeping in shape during down times, many first responders are implementing brain training into their fitness regimen.


Frequency of Brain Training: Striking a Balance for Optimal Cognitive Fitness

The quest for optimal cognitive fitness, much like pursuing physical health, involves finding the right balance in training frequency. Brain training, a term encompassing various cognitive exercises and activities, is recognized for its potential to enhance cognitive functions. However, determining the optimal frequency for brain training is a nuanced process that varies among individuals. To draw a parallel, let’s compare this to the frequency with which individuals on a weight loss program weigh themselves—a practice that also requires a delicate balance.

Brain Training Frequency:

  1. Individual Variability: Just as


Building blocks of the CNS

The Brain Gauge is effective at tracking brain health because it measures the building blocks of information processing. So what do we mean by this? Essentially, the Brain Gauge measures target, at a systems level, ingredients for higher order processing. For example, information processing speed is critical for all types of processing. Mechanisms such as lateral inhibition and plasticity are key components or building blocks for memories (i.e, the Brain Gauge measures lateral inhibition and plasticity, but not memory). In other words, the design of the Brain Gauge system


Boiling frogs and old people

How many times do we need to hear people say "I'm fine" and have that be the primary method for evaluating mental health? That really doesn't make any reasonable standard. Using degenerative and failing brain health to evaluate whether or not that very brain is still capable of working simply does not work.

The "boiling frog syndrome" is a metaphorical anecdote often used to illustrate the concept of gradual change or a slow decline that goes unnoticed until it's too late. The story goes that if


A modest proposal: the not so secret formula for getting dementia

After watching a few people in my life go down the dementia path, I thought I might share with you the benefits of dementia and the best lifestyle to pursue that elusive formula. After all, after you completely lose it, you don't have to be responsible for anything. You can sit in a wheel chair and watch TV all day. Or just talk to your cats. You don't have to drive because your driver's license will be taken away. Your memory is shot - but with the lifestyle that you


Can you train to multi-task?

Multi-tasking is something that is difficult to accomplish - unless you train for it - and then it can become a significantly valuable tool. Imagine all the work that you could get done during zoom meetings if you could sort of pay attention to what's being said online while you go about doing something else. For most of our lives (well, for those of us that grew up pre-cell phones and social media), we have been taught to focus on one thing and one thing only. Constant interruptions from emails,


How to use the Brain Gauge to maintain brain health

Preventing age-related dementia is a growing concern as the population ages. The Brain Gauge, with its dual function as a cognitive assessment tool and brain training platform, offers a promising approach to maintaining brain fitness and reducing the risk of dementia. Being able to assess an individual's cognitive status - even if it is your own - plays an essential role in tracking decreased (or increased) performance levels. Using the Brain Gauge for brain training can improve cognitive reserve and improve overall brain function. The iterative process between the two


Benefits of brain training to athletes?

Brain training can offer several benefits to athletes by enhancing various cognitive and mental skills that are crucial for sports performance. Here are some of the key advantages of brain training for athletes:

Improved Focus and Concentration: Brain training exercises can enhance an athlete's ability to concentrate on the task at hand, helping them stay in the zone during competitions and training sessions. Improved focus can lead to better decision-making and execution of skills.

Enhanced Reaction Time: Quick and accurate decision-making is vital in sports. Brain training can help athletes


Lysine and aging dementias

It's not uncommon to come across new studies revealing potential links between the onset of Alzheimer's Disease (AD) and a wide array of factors. These factors range from alcohol consumption, both excessive and abstinent, to various medical conditions like stroke, pre-eclampsia, high blood pressure, and even dietary choices such as soy intake and carbohydrate-heavy diets. Simultaneously, there is an extensive list of recommendations for preventing Alzheimer's Disease, including increasing physical activity, maintaining social connections, moderate alcohol consumption, adopting a Mediterranean-style diet (which includes soy), and minimizing prescription drug usage while


What is cognitive reserve and how do you preserve it?

When I started to look for images for "cognitive reserve", the majority of photos that popped up were related to preservation - such as preserving different aspects of the environment. Not what I was looking for, but when you think about it, preserving your individual environment has a lot to do with preserving cognitive reserve. I have always been fully supportive of any efforts we make to preserve the environment that we have and in many ways, the same principles apply to preserving our cognitive abilities through the