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Could lifestyle changes improve brain health?

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The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Answered by

Dr. Ashok Kumar

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At January 31, 2017
Reviewed AtAugust 3, 2023

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I am turning 22 in two weeks, and I am deeply worried about my brain health. On the top of pretty moderate to severe inattentive attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and general learning or processing issues, I smoked way too much weed from ages 16 to 20. For all of my life, I spent most of my leisure time zapping my brain in front of the tv or computer due to extensive depression. I did not take part in many hobbies growing up either. I have a pretty good understanding of neuroplasticity, and I can see how these habits have damaged my neurological and thus general, potential. My question is, does my brain still have a chance to be adequate and powerful? I only have three years left of profound brain growth. I live very healthily. I eat small portions and include periods of intermittent fasting. I am currently on a ketogenic diet (no sugar or carbohydrate, high fat, protein and greens) and I exercise high-intensity cardio and weightlifting for three to five times a week. I am doing meditation every day for more than 10 minutes almost for a year now, and I am beginning to engage in meaningful activities such as salsa, yoga or tennis as well as attempting to build friendships and reduce stress levels. Could fundamental lifestyle changes such as the above give a neurological advantage compared to those in my general demographic? Thank you so much for your help. It means a lot.

Answered by Dr. Ashok Kumar

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com. I read your query and understand your concerns. My answer to your question is both yes and no. Yes because the neuroplasticity is a continuous process and changes almost everything in the desired direction over the course of time. The positive lifestyle factors definitely undo the consequences of negative lifestyle behaviors, and it is possible that you will be able to achieve your maximum potential. My answer is no because some amount of damage cannot be done with whatever amount of neuroplasticity. Also, I like to inform you that positive lifestyle behaviors add in your overall brain health and place of ahead of others.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Ashok Kumar
Dr. Ashok Kumar

Geriatrics

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