Thursday, January 17th
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Please contact SIRRI
at (480) 777-7075 or e-mail
to reserve your seat(s).
If you are unable to attend,
please call for a free
Investing in Our Most Precious Asset in 2013
by Alvaro Fernandez
SharpBrains - December 31, 2012
Open a weekend New York Times or Wall Street Journal, and you'll find a whole section with detailed information and advice for individuals looking to invest wisely. What you will not find, however, is comparable information and advice for investing in your most important asset of all: your brain. Precisely because it (usually) does its job so smoothly and effectively, it's all too easy to forget that your brain is there and that it needs to be invested in just as with anything else we value and want to continue reaping benefits from. And with more than 2 billion people worldwide currently suffering from brain-based health and productivity challenges with a resulting global economic burden of more than $2 trillion, according to our research, it's also an issue of some importance.
We've made a lot of progress over the last century in understanding the brain, but it wasn't until the last few decades that we've come to understand the ways in which our everyday behaviors affect, for better or worse, our brain's health and performance. We now know that certain basic activities, including physical exercise, proper nutrition, stress management, and mental exercise, are integral components of a brain-healthy lifestyle, and people are waking up to the fact that they need to be proactive in monitoring and managing the health and fitness of their brains. As detailed in our new market report on digital brain health, the large majority of respondents to a 2012 SharpBrains survey of 3,000+ decision-makers and early adopters in the field found that the majority believe that brain health should be a health care priority, that adults should take charge of their own "brain fitness," and that digital technologies significantly augment traditional approaches.
As a growing number of consumers, innovators, and decision-makers invest in digital technologies to better monitor and enhance cognition across the lifespan, we are witnessing the rapid growth and development of a new digital brain health marketplace. Right now, the digital brain health market -- which includes both software applications and biometric hardware products designed to monitor, assess, enhance or repair neurocognitive functions such as executive attention working memory and emotional self-regulation -- can be divided into four main customer segments: consumers, health care, senior living, and insurance providers, K12 school systems, and employers. Consumers have become the predominant customer segment, surpassing health care/insurance providers, as the combination of an increase in the diagnosis of learning disabilities, anxiety disorders, an aging baby boomer population with a keen interest in maintaining their mental sharpness, and the trending desire for a healthy lifestyle has consumers looking for healthier, non-invasive alternatives to existing drug-led and therapist-led approaches. Not only that, self-monitoring options for better managing one's cognitive and emotional functioning are already becoming available to consumers at user-friendly prices and packaging, and strong signals suggest the next frontier in the consumer application of biometrics is going to be brain health.
The overall market has kept growing since 2009 despite the overall economic challenges, both in the software and hardware segments. We estimate the global market for brain health applications of software and biometrics to be more than $1 billion in 2012, and we forecast it will reach $6 billion in 2020. The industry is still made up of many small companies, which has been a limitation for the marketplace's maturation given contradictory, controversial marketing claims. That being said, sizable recent investments by strategic and financial investors suggest booming prospects and the increasing professionalization of the sector.
We can expect several drivers to fuel continued growth and innovation. Equipment that used to be expensive and cumbersome is becoming user-friendly and inexpensive, and tablets and mobile phones are becoming a major delivery vehicle for digital brain health solutions. Heavy investment into online platforms are geared to gain consumer market share, with many companies offering free or freemium subscriptions. Over the course of this decade, we will likely see Big Data and cloud-based applications that will enable truly personalized brain health solutions, and a more developed ecosystem built around users and tools.
And while it's unlikely that we'll see people devoting as much time and attention to investing in their brains as in their finances any time soon, digital brain health solutions going mainstream among both consumers and health care providers will be a big step forward.
Because the fact is, we all got a beautiful human brain. We can invest in it to better live, love, work, innovate.
Upcoming Session Dates
Sensory Learning Program
Monday, January 7 through
Friday, January 18
Monday, January 21 through
Friday, February 1
Monday, February 4 through
Friday, February 15
Monday, February 18 through
Friday, March 1
SIRRI offers these services for both children & adults:
- Neurofeedback & Biofeedback
- QEEG / Brain Mapping
- Cognitive Retraining: memory, processing & problem solving skills
- Attention, Concentration & Focus Training
- Auditory & Visual Processing
- Reading Development: fluency & comprehension
- Balance, Coordination & Motor Planning Development
- Stress & Anxiety Management
- IEP Advocacy
Referral Program Promotion:
Win an iPad Mini!
An iPad Mini will be provided to the client
who refers the most new clients between
November 1, 2012 and May 31, 2013.
*Details: New clients must have an Evaluation or Assessment completed or sign up for a program or package before May 31, 2013.
If an iPad Mini is not available, a comparable substitution will be provided.
Please contact us if you have any questions.
Do you believe in these neuromyths? Do we only use 10% of our brain?
By Sanne Dekker et al
SharpBrains - November 16, 2012
Here you have 32 brain-related statements. Are they correct or incorrect?
- We use our brains 24 h a day (C ).
- Children must acquire their native language before a second language is learned. If they do not do so neither language will be fully acquired (I).
- Boys have bigger brains than girls (C ).
- If pupils do not drink sufficient amounts of water (=6–8 glasses a day) their brains shrink (I).
- It has been scientifically proven that fatty acid supplements (omega-3 and omega-6) have a positive effect on academic achievement (I).
- When a brain region is damaged other parts of the brain can take up its function (C ).
- We only use 10% of our brain (I).
- The left and right hemisphere of the brain always work together (C ).
- Differences in hemispheric dominance (left brain, right brain) can help explain individual differences amongst learners (I).
- The brains of boys and girls develop at the same rate (I).
- Brain development has finished by the time children reach secondary school (I).
- There are critical periods in childhood after which certain things can no longer be learned (I).
- Information is stored in the brain in a network of cells distributed throughout the brain (C ).
- Learning is not due to the addition of new cells to the brain (C ).
- Individuals learn better when they receive information in their preferred learning style (e.g., auditory, visual, kinesthetic) (I).
- Learning occurs through modification of the brains’ neural connections (C ).
- Academic achievement can be affected by skipping breakfast (C ).
- Normal development of the human brain involves the birth and death of brain cells (C ).
- Mental capacity is hereditary and cannot be changed by the environment or experience (I).
- Vigorous exercise can improve mental function (C ).
- Environments that are rich in stimulus improve the brains of pre-school children (I).
- Children are less attentive after consuming sugary drinks and/or snacks (I).
- Circadian rhythms (“body-clock”) shift during adolescence, causing pupils to be tired during the first lessons of the school day (C ).
- Regular drinking of caffeinated drinks reduces alertness (C ).
- Exercises that rehearse co-ordination of motor-perception skills can improve literacy skills (I).
- Extended rehearsal of some mental processes can change the shape and structure of some parts of the brain (C ).
- Individual learners show preferences for the mode in which they receive information (e.g., visual, auditory, kinesthetic) (C ).
- Learning problems associated with developmental differences in brain function cannot be remediated by education (I).
- Production of new connections in the brain can continue into old age (C ).
- Short bouts of co-ordination exercises can improve integration of left and right hemispheric brain function (I).
- There are sensitive periods in childhood when it’s easier to learn things (C ).
- When we sleep, the brain shuts down (I).
Neuromyth assertions are presented in italic; C = correct; I = incorrect.
From the Study:
Neuromyths in education: Prevalence and predictors of misconceptions among teachers (Frontiers in Educational Psychology).
13 Ways for Your Family to Eat Healthy in 2013
Everyone knows that sweeping self-improvement New Year's resolutions get broken faster than you can say "I'd like the cheesecake for dessert, please." Resolve to ban sugar forever, exercise every day or read every word of the New York Times seven days a week, and you'll be lucky to last a month before you fall off the wagon. The key is to start small. (As they say, a journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step.) In the improve-your-diet department, here are 13 tips from online meal planning service eMeals (www.emeals.com) to move yourself – and your family – in the right direction.
- Adopt Meatless Mondays – Going meatless just one day a week can reduce your risk of several chronic diseases as well as shrink your carbon footprint. VIPs from Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson and ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney to actress Emily Deschanel, The Biggest Loser's Bob Harper and Food Network chef Giada De Laurentiis have endorsed the strategy for both the body and the planet.
- Try "clean eating" – Replace pizza and processed foods with fresh meats, produce and seasonal items. For help and sample menus created by a foodie mom who feeds her own family of six this way, see http://emeals.com/meal-plans/clean-eating/ - complete with ideas like Greek Chicken Wraps with Spinach Cantaloupe Salad that even a toddler can love.
- Dump the 'bad' oils – Banish butter and bacon grease and replace them with healthy fats like canola and olive oil. Try making your own salad dressing with oil and your favorite vinegar. Your cholesterol level will thank you.
- Eat breakfast every day – The old adage is true: breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. It fuels your body and brain with the energy you need to face the day. Whether it's a smoothie, Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal or Whole Wheat Banana Nut Muffins, you can get quick and healthy breakfast ideas at http://emeals.com/meal-plans/breakfast/
- Purge your pantry and fridge – Get rid of anything that's expired or unhealthy, then restock with healthy staples like brown rice, dried beans, canned tuna and prepared pasta sauce for quick and nutritious meals.
- Brown-bag it at least 3 days a week – Pack your lunch for work or school to eat better - and save money too. You'll find inspiration – and recipes for goodies like Turkey Pepperoni Pasta Salad – at http://emeals.com/meal-plans/lunch/
- Eat a colorful ROYGBIV diet – Red foods like tomatoes, watermelon, grapefruit, red bell pepper and red cabbage contain lycopene, which may reduce the risk of some cancers. Orange choices are filled with Vitamin A and carotenoids that are good for your eyesight. Blue/purple produce includes anthycyanins that support heart health. And green veggies contain isothyiocyanates that help flush cancer-causing compounds out of the body. Bonus: the Vitamin K in leafy greens helps regulate blood pressure, too.
- Downsize your plates – We all tend to eat everything we put on our plates – and usually that's way too much. If you start a meal with salad, that helps fill you up so you won't overeat the rest of your dinner. You can also get ideas for portion-controlled meals at http://emeals.com/meal-plans/portion-control/
- Switch out soda – All of the calories in soda and sugary drinks are empty calories, meaning they contribute no healthy nutrients. Swap soda for calorie-free beverages like water or sparkling water (add a splash of lemon or lime for flavor), or beverages with some nutritional value, like skim milk or small amounts of 100% fruit juice.
- Add kale, quinoa or both to your plate – Just one cup of kale contains 180% of the daily requirement of Vitamin A, 200% of Vitamin C, and 1,020% of Vitamin K, making it a cancer-fighting superfood. Quinoa is a gluten-free whole grain and a complete protein ideal for gluten-free, vegetarian, or overall healthy diets. Start with the Walnut-Raisin Quinoa recipe at http://blog.emeals.com/quin-what-a-guide-to-quinoa/ - yum!
- Make half your plate fresh fruit and vegetables –Diets high in fruits and vegetables contribute to a reduced risk of heart disease, some cancers, obesity and Type II Diabetes. They're also high in fiber, so they fill you up with fewer
calories than other foods.
- Take the Paleo plunge – This one is for the more adventurous, but it's not as difficult as it seems. The 'caveman diet' focuses on meat, fish, shellfish, eggs, fresh produce, tree nuts and seeds, and healthy fats, eliminating processed foods, grains, dairy, sugar, legumes and potatoes. You'll find a printable shopping list at http://blog.emeals.com/getting-started-on-paleo-meal-planning-a-shopping-guide/ and sample menus at http://emeals.com/meal-plans/paleo/
- Try meal planning and avoid the 6 o'clock drive through run – You'll save time and money – and also eat healthier – when you plan ahead. eMeals can help by delivering weekly menus, recipes and grocery lists directly to your email inbox, saving hours of "What do I make for dinner?" angst as well as ensuring variety and enabling efficient once-a-week food shopping.
eMeals.com – Thu, Dec 27, 2012