From Drs. Kelsey

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Our Chiropractic Functional Neurology is about the fact that the brain is plastic and can actually change itself with exercises, and understanding, and cutting edge nutrition. "A panoramic examination of (brain) plasticity's profound implications. Injured or dysfunctional cells and circuits can indeed be regenerated and rewired; the location of a given function can, astonishingly, move from one place to another. The body's lifespan may not have to outpace its mental lifespan. . . . Everything that you can see happen in a young brain can happen in an older brain. Deterioration can be reversed by twenty to thirty years."

From The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge, M.D.

"Dr. Karansky is always learning new things, which plays a role in being happy and healthy in old age, according Dr. George Vaillant, a Harvard psychiatrist who heads up the largest, longest ongoing study of the human life cycle, the Harvard Study of Adult Development. He studied 824 people from their late teens through to old age from three groups: Harvard graduates, poor Bostonians, and women with extremely high IQs. Some of these people, now in their eighties, have been tracked for over six decades. Vaillant concluded that old age is not simply a process of decline and decay, as many younger people think. Older people often develop new skills and are often wiser and more socially adept than they were as younger adults. These elderly people are actually less prone to depression than younger people and usually do not suffer from incapacitating disease until they get their final illness.

Of course, challenging mental activities will increase the likelihood that our hippocampal neurons will survive. One approach is to use tested brain exercises, such as those Merzenich developed. But life is for living and not only for doing exercises, so it is best that people also choose to do something they have always wanted to do, because they will be highly motivated, which is crucial. Mary Masano, at age eighty-nine, earned her undergraduate degree from Harvard. David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, taught himself ancient Greek in old age to master the classics in the original. We might think, "What for? Who am I fooling? I am at the end of the road. But that thinking is a self-fulfilling prophecy, which hastens the mental decline of the use-it-or-lose-it brain.

At ninety the architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed the Guggenheim Museum. At seventy-eight, Benjamin Franklin invented bifocal spectacles. In studies of creativity, H.C. Lehman and Dean Keith Simonton found that while the ages thirty-five to fifty-five are the peak of creativity in most fields, people in their sixties and seventies, though they work at a slower speed, are as productive as they were in their twenties.

When Pablo Casals, the cellist, was ninety-one years old, he was approached by a student who asked, "Master, why do you continue to practice?" Casals replied, "Because I am making progress."

Drs. Vicki and Charles Kelsey help people of all ages, from five to ninety-five. It is never too late to improve your brain function and thus the quality of your life.