Brain power and brain health are often used interchangeably. However, they’re not the same. This article will explain the two ideas so that you can tell the difference. It’ll also help you know what exactly it is that you’re trying to improve when we start digging more into the subject matter.
What is Brain Health?
The crux of brain health is the ability of a person to function well when performing daily activities, including work. This includes functions such as making quality decisions, solving problems, enjoying emotional balance, and interacting successfully with others. All of these functions are based on the ability to remember, understand, learn new things, process information, think strategically, and being innovative when solving problems. Note that brain health is not the function. Rather, brain health is the fact that your brain is in a good state that enables it to carry out those functions.
So, when your brain isn’t healthy due to various reasons, which include an unhealthy lifestyle and accident, it’ll not be able to carry out its functions effectively. There are many changes taking place in the brain when you think, learn, imagine, and feel. Your habits also lead to changes in the way your brain functions and can affect its performance. Therefore, you have a role to play in ensuring that your brain health isn’t affected.
World Health Organization’s Take on Brain Health
According to the World Health Organization, brain health is an emerging and growing phenomenon that encompasses plasticity, functioning, and recovery across the life course. When you have good brain health, you’ll be able to realize your own abilities and maximize your emotional, psychological, behavioural, and cognitive functioning to cope with different life issues. Several interconnected biological and social determinants play a role in brain health and brain development from pre-conception through the end of life. These determinants are responsible for the way the brain develops, responds, and adapts to various situations.
They give ways to strategize in order to prevent issues and make progress across the life course. Brain health conditions are characterized by disruptions in normal brain growth and brain functioning. They emerge throughout the life course and may manifest as neurological and neurodevelopmental conditions. They include headache, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, neuro-infections, autism spectrum disorders, cerebrovascular disease, brain tumours, epilepsy, cerebral palsy, dementia, traumatic injury, and neurological disorders resulting from malnutrition.
Social and health care for these conditions often requires multisectoral and interdisciplinary collaborations with a holistic person-centered approach focused on prevention, promotion, treatment, and care. They also include rehabilitation over the lifespan and the active engagement of persons experiencing the conditions and their families and carers, as appropriate.
What is Brain Power?
Unlike brain health, brain power is all about the brain’s functions. It includes intelligence and the ability to think. So, what we admire about people isn’t their brain health but their brain power. People with fantastic brain power are capable of handling highly intelligent activities and perform at a high level. You cannot afford to have low brain power in the modern world due to the fact that we are increasingly moving away from the days when we depend more on our muscles and strength.
The most successful people in the modern world aren’t the most muscular but those that know how to maximize their brain power. These days, we are involved in many activities that require idea generation, business meetings, copywriting, and other endeavours that require you to be alert and focused. The pressure to perform at your optimum level is very high in the modern world. There are many people waiting in the queue to replace you if you cannot produce the goods. Therefore, it is vital that you’re deliberate about improving your cognitive ability.
When you have high brain power, it guarantees that you will be able to do more in a short time. Indeed, there are some people that are naturally super intelligent. Still, there are things that can be done to ensure that you can compete favourably with such people. Scientifically, brain power can be measured. It can be done by using the Brain Health Index (BHI). The BHI is a multi-faceted science-based snapshot that helps to measure the brain’s performance. You can subjectively detect when your brain performance is improving. However, tests like this can help you to track changes in your brain performance in an objective way.
Fun Facts About the Brain
As we conclude this section, we’ll highlight some fun facts about the brain as we prepare for further discussion regarding brain health and brain power in the next chapter. Below are some interesting facts about the brain that you will find intriguing:
Incredible Miles of Blood Vessels
The brain has more than one hundred thousand miles of blood vessels! This is striking because even the distance around the world at the equator isn’t up to that. The distance is 24,900 miles. This implies that if the blood vessels in the brain were stretched out as a journey, it would take days to complete it!
It’s Normal for Your Mind to Wander
It’s vital that you do all you can to stay focused. However, it’s not necessarily a sign of indiscipline to find your mind wandering once in a while. Research has proven that some parts of the brain are responsible for controlling activities such as daydreaming. Interestingly, these parts are always active when your brain is at rest.
Thinking Consumes a lot of Oxygen
Oxygen is the fuel of the brain. The more you think, the more it consumes. Serious and rigorous thinking, especially when you are anxious, can consume up to fifty percent. So, you should try as much as possible to cut off anxiety to preserve your brain health.
Size Doesn’t Matter
Some people assume that an individual will be more intelligent when he or she has a relatively larger brain. However, this isn’t true. There is no scientific evidence that supports the claim that a larger brain will make a person smarter.
The average adult human brain weighs around three pounds. Interestingly, it has a texture that feels like firm jelly. Have you ever wondered what it feels like if you touch the human brain? There it is!
High Blood Consumption
The brain carries out a lot of activities within a short period. Therefore, it’s not shocking that it consumes a lot of blood. In fact, up to one-fourth of the blood pumped by the heart arteries goes to the brain.
The brain works like an electric circuit. Every action carried out by other parts of the body is a product of the connections in the brain. For example, when you recall a thought, it’s due to a connection in the brain.
Ten percent of the brain is made up of over 100 billion neurons. These neurons branch out to over 100 trillion trigger points. This forms a vast connection of nerve cells that experts refer to as the neuron forest.