Cognitive health through the ages

Development, Enhancement and Maintenance of Cognitive Health Through the Ages

The human brain begins to develop soon after conception: ultimately forming a complex system of connections that continue to be refined and reshaped throughout an individual’s lifespan. These connections are the information processing networks responsible for our thoughts, sensations, feelings and actions.

Cognitive health includes the support and maintenance of functional thinking ability- the ability to acquire, process, represent and recall information.

Developing and maintaining cognitive function is a continuum from birth to old-age. Importantly, different aspects of cognitive health may be more or less relevant at different life stages.

This paper draws on the presentation of three international experts from South Africa, UK and Australia – presented during a symposium convened as part of the Pan African Congress of Integrative Medicine (South Africa – May 2017). It examines the current evidence for the role of complementary therapies omega-3/omega-6 fatty acids, Bacopa monnieri, Panax ginseng and Ginkgo biloba – in neurocognitive development across different life stages.

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