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Battle Back To School Sluggishness

Naturally Energizing Supplements

Q: I’m a University Student, and I find it very challenging to come out of summer and get back into school mode. Everything feels sluggish… my energy, my ability to think and focus etc. What could you suggest to make this transition smoother?

A:  After a fantastic summer, where there may have been a little too much indulgence, coming back to work mode might feel challenging. Eating less healthily, and not keeping a routine can leave the body feeling depleted and the brain unable to concentrate. Thankfully there are supplements available that can help get you back on track and keep you functioning and feeling fantastic!

Omega-3 Fatty Acids  Did you know that fats make up 60 percent of the brain and the nervous system? Unfortunately the standard North American diet is often too high in poor fats and drastically lacking in healthy fats, like the omega-3 fatty acids. The omega-3s have been well researched for their benefits in cognitive function and their promotion of healthy brain aging.  They play a pivotal role in brain cell membranes, and help control the transport of nutrients in and waste products out of cells. These healthy fats can also positively influence brain development and performance, especially at either end of life, such as in growing infants and elderly people. However, despite the brain having completed most of its growth by adolescence, it continues to make vital connections, as we continue to learn and develop.  This allows for a continuous opportunity for brain growth when a diet with healthy fats is maintained.

Phosphatidylserine Phosphatidylserine (PS), is found in every cell of the body, but concentrated amounts exist in the phospholipid cell membranes of brain cells.  This key nutrient regulates how brain cells work, navigating how nutrients get in, waste product moves out and how the brain cells communicate with each other, and it both enhances and protects brain function. Optimal levels of PS in the brain help with stress tolerance, memory, learning, concentration, coordination and mood.

Spirulina The health benefits of this blue-green algae are vast and can impact every area of the body.  This is due to its large array of beneficial components. To start, spirulina is rich in protein, containing all the essential amino acids and 10 of the non-essential amino acids. Spirulina is also packed with beneficial nutrients such as B vitamins, Vitamin K, is naturally rich in iodine, minerals, and chlorophyll, and is one of the best known sources of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is essential to support proper inflammatory and immune reactions.  Some argue that Hawaiian spirulina is the best quality, containing almost double the nutrient content compared to other sources. Also, because of the hot sunny days, Hawaiian spirulina becomes extremely rich in beta carotene. Studies show that this super food can be useful in preventing or treating conditions like hypertension, Type 2 Diabetes, allergy symptoms, boosting immune system and energy, benefiting brain health etc.  Spirulina also helps to alkalize the system and support detoxification, thus helping the body rebound from those summer celebrations.


Dr. Michelle Pobega, ND runs an independent naturopathic practice near the Annex neighbourhood of Toronto. Stay connected with her at drmichellend.ca, facebook, and twitter @MPobegaND