health

Food for the Brain

final1.jpg

Author: Laura Freeman

Spring is a stressful time for many of us, whether it’s because we’re finalizing taxes, planning a big trip for the summer, or applying for jobs or internships. Overwhelmed with everything that needs to be done, and everything we want to do, we tend to overlook one of our basic needs – healthy eating. Too often, I find myself stopping by the Jack in the Box across the street for a quick meal and an Oreo milkshake, or ordering Italian from Postmates on the days I feel like spending a bit more. Besides contributing to the United States’ obesity epidemic, unhealthy eating can intensify the effects of a brain injury (Wolpert).

Studies also show that diets high in saturated fats and trans fats can hinder cognition. In particular, the consumption junk food and fast food has shown adverse effects on learning and memory (Wolpert). Fortunately, just as there are bad foods for the brain, there are also good foods! Folic acid, found in various foods such as spinach and oranges, is critical for brain function. Likewise, omega-3 fatty acids have been used to treat Alzheimers, as well as other memory deficits (Wolpert). Other healthy foods include whole grains, beans, seeds, and tea (Sorgen).

This got me thinking about how healthy eating may help me feel less stressed and more energetic. It isn’t that I enjoy eating fast food or ordering from Postmates every night – it’s just more convenient and cheaper (or so I thought). What could I make that is quick and healthy?

And then, it hit me: grain bowls! Grain bowls, like Mason jar salads and avocado toast have been all the rage lately, but they usually use expensive “superfoods”, like chia seeds, quinoa, and out-of-season avocados. Even though I can’t afford to use those ingredients regularly, I could still make grain bowls with cheaper alternatives!

Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 1.16.29 PM.png

With those healthy brain foods in mind, I make a quick stop at Trader Joe’s and discover, to my delight, that the ingredients for five portions amounted to only $11.93 – cheaper than my average Postmates order! I begin peeling sweet potatoes, grinding spices, sautéing chickpeas, roasting tofu, boiling farro, and cubing feta cheese. Soon enough, it all comes together as a stunning, aromatic cornucopia of healthy foods. In just one hour of prepping and cooking, I managed to make enough food for the whole week’s lunches. In my mind, it’s a win-win-win situation; I pay less for healthier food that makes me feel energized and focused on the busy season to come.

 

Sources:

Sorgen, C. (2006). Eat Smart for a Healthier Brain. Retrieved April 10, 2018

Wolpert, S. (2008, July 09). Scientists learn how what you eat affects your brain - and those of your kids. Retrieved April 10, 2018

Tommy Manning Act

Author: Aimee Garcia

Seattle has a relatively new initiative to help people with traumatic brain injury named The Washington Traumatic Brain Injury Strategic Partnership Advisory Council, commonly known as the Tommy Manning Act. It was created through House Bill 2055 by the Washington State Legislature in 2007. It is to “recognize the current programs and services are not funded or designed to address the diverse needs of individuals with traumatic brain injuries.”  Its creation is to close the gap in knowledge by collecting the expertise from both the public and private sector. Membership includes twenty two people from both sectors that includes medical professionals, human service providers, family members of individuals, state agency representatives, and many more that can provide useful information to advance their agenda.

The Tommy Manning Act has taken upon itself to work in unison with the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services to address some of their goals. Unfortunately, the Manning Act has not posted their own goals on their website but directs the reader to the DSHS website, where they do not explicitly have goals that directly affect people with brain injuries.

Though the act is still fairly, new it could potentially have the momentum to change the lives and the families of those who have been affected by traumatic brain injuries. Yet, they have not stated their own goals and rely heavily on DSHS without any visible momentum to directly address the concerns of people with brain injuries. Yes, the program are only eleven years old but in those years, there has not been noticeable change for the people most in need.

Sources:

“Traumatic Brain Injury Advisory Council.” Traumatic Brain Injury Advisory Council | DSHS, www.dshs.wa.gov/altsa/traumatic-brain-injury/traumatic-brain-injury-advisory-council.

“About Us.” About Us | DSHS, www.dshs.wa.gov/altsa/about-us.

 

What Licensed Naturopaths Say About MS

Author: Catherine Waterbury

According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, MS is “an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.” MS effects more than 2.3 million people worldwide and can be extremely difficult to diagnose. Unfortunately, there is not a cure for MS. Common treatments for MS include: teaming up with a healthcare provider, taking pharmaceutical medication, and participating in physical therapy.

MS-Symptoms-FB
MS-Symptoms-FB

Other treatment options for MS are referred to as “Commentary or Alternative Medicines” (CAM). These treatments include exercise, alternative diet, and the addition of supplements. In a study done by members of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, 52% of the naturopaths being surveyed suggested dietary changes to treat MS. The study also indicated that 45% of the naturopaths suggested essential fatty acid supplementation and 33% suggested vitamin/mineral supplementation. At the end of the study, 59% of patients claimed they experienced an improved quality of life by using a CAM system.

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society advises those with MS to not “abandon conventional therapy” and be sure to “keep your physician informed about everything you are taking”. With that being said, if you are interested in adding elements of CAM system to your treatment, you should! There are a large variety of therapies you could try, including: acupuncture, nutrition lessons, exercise, cooking classes, and many more!

Can-acupuncture-mend-a-broken-heart
Can-acupuncture-mend-a-broken-heart

If you have MS and are interested in an CAM style therapy, The Plus One Foundation may be able to help you fund your therapy. Please look over our website for more information!

Sources:

"Home." National Multiple Sclerosis Society. N.p., 16 Feb. 2018. Web. 20 Feb. 2018.

"All IssuesUp Arrow In This IssueDown Arrow Left ArrowPrevious Article Next ArticleRight Arrow The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine About This Journal... Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Multiple Sclerosis: Survey of Licensed Naturopaths." The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. N.p., n.d. Web.

Diabetes While Young

Author: Farhan Mohamed

I learned that the trouble in my family had finally reached me. I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in May 2015. Since then my life has changed in many ways. I’ve been living with diabetes and I’ve learned a lot about myself since then. When I first learned I had diabetes, I was scared, and it was a big shock. My life was going to change. I couldn’t enjoy the things I loved anymore. All the sugary foods and drinks I had everyday were going to be a thing of the past. I was addicted to eating cookies. Cookies were and still are my favorite desert. It was something that was hard to give up but for my health I was willing to let it all go. I found a new passion for eating healthier. I was extreme with my diet and only ate foods that my nutritionist told me was okay. I gave up breads, pastas, and only drank water. This new healthy lifestyle lasted only 8 months and after then I slowly slipped back into my regular diet. I forgot I had diabetes and stopped taking my medicine. This was very dangerous for me. A normal person is supposed to have a blood sugar level between 80 and 120 and when I went to my yearly diabetes appointment last year my blood sugar level was 577.  My doctor was shocked and told me to fix my life because a person as young as I am can reverse a lot of the diabetes and live a healthy lifestyle through good dieting and working out. I am now on the road to recovery and my medication has changed. It is hard to give up the temptations of sugar, but I know I must change things while young or my diabetes will consume me when I’m older. It’s hard to take my medication every day and I’m still not good at remembering but I’m making an effort.

Diabetes is a disease that involves issues with insulin production in the body. There is no cure for diabetes. The only way to combat diabetes is to stay healthy with diet and exercise. There are three major types of diabetes being type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes. Type 1 diabetes often begins in childhood. It is an autoimmune condition. Treatment for type 1 diabetes involves taking insulin that is injected via syringes. You can keep track of how good you are taking care of your diabetes through your A1C level from the blood test. It estimates your glucose level in your blood over the previous three months. It’s helpful to help identify glucose level control and risks of complications from the disease. Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes and it accounts for 95% of diabetes cases in adults. Type 2 diabetes is milder than type 1 but can still cause a lot of complications. Type 2 diabetes effects the small blood vessels in the body that nourish the kidneys, nerves, and eyes. It is very controllable through diet and medication. For more information about diabetes check with your doctor.

 

Sources:

"Types of Diabetes Mellitus." WebMD. WebMD, n.d. Web. 15 Feb. 2018.

Traveling as a Stress Reliever

Author: Erin Keating

Shoes off, sweater off, everything out of my pockets. Laptop in separate bin, backpack and everything else in another. Arms up over head and feet spread slightly. Grab everything as fast as you can and head to the gate.

Airport security is something I like to think that I have mastered. I have learned a lot of tricks for making my time at the airport as easy as possible. Like not wearing difficult shoes, just a pair that you can take on and off easily. And making sure you at least have a couple snacks with you since airport food is more expensive and not that great.

Traveling is one of my passions and I’m always on the lookout for another opportunity to escape, especially somewhere warm in the winter months. Living on the west coast, a popular place I like to go to is California, sometimes to visit family in San Francisco and sometimes to just have fun in Los Angeles.

Screen Shot 2018-02-10 at 12.12.53 PM
Screen Shot 2018-02-10 at 12.12.53 PM

Recently, I went to London and Paris for a month. I learned so much about new cultures and art and it was so much fun to roam new cities I have never been to before. There are great benefits for travel and I have found that by saving up a little bit here and there, making a trip happen is easy.

A study published by HostelWorld Global Traveler Report showed that there are five significant benefits of traveling abroad. First being that traveling makes you healthier and decreases the risk of heart disease. It also reduces stress, specifically after you’ve returned home and are feeling the benefits of being well rested and at ease. Traveling as makes you more creative with the immersion into a culture. It increases your happiness and satisfaction levels and it decreases depression.

All of these benefits I can attest to. When I return home from traveling, I feel happy to be home and to see my family and friends, but I also feel like I have gained a new experience and fun memories to look back on.

Sources:

"5 Reasons Traveling Abroad Is Seriously Good for Your Health." NBCNews.com. NBCUniversal News Group, n.d. Web. 10 Feb. 2018.

I Don't Have Time!

Author: Olivia Tang

Whether it’s because of school, work, or a combination of both. Our professional and educational lives seem to get in the way of doing what we love!

Admittedly, when I started my first year of college I had trouble adjusting to the class structure and the freedom of choosing what to do with my time. Teachers in high school would spend more time on topics than professors in college. The pace of college classes was faster as well.

Being new to the college grind, I didn’t know how to allocate my time for my classes while also leaving time for fun and social life. This made it easy for me to think that I didn’t have any free time at all. Everything became more manageable after I started planning.

Screen Shot 2018-02-01 at 2.47.11 PM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-01 at 2.47.11 PM.png

I started writing down all my tasks for the day into my sketchbook. I write everything I need to get done for the next week, and I circle all the important tasks I need to get done. I find that crossing off the tasks at the end of the day to be incredibly satisfying, and whenever I don’t have a spurt of motivation when I need it I use that time to draw in my sketchbook. It gives me more time to look at the to do list I’ve made for myself on the page and it also gives me time to do something I love, drawing! Psychologists say that 25% of our happiness comes from how we manage our own stress.

We feel happiness due to the effects of Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin and Endorphins. Together these chemicals help design our own happiness. According to Nicole Lazzaro, a world-renowned game designer that specializes on gamifying experiences, each chemical that affects our happiness plays a different role in how we experience happiness.

Lazzaro explains that we typically think of Dopamine as the “happiness drug” when in reality dopamine more affects our feeling of anticipation. Oxytocin is the chemical that allows us to feel empathy, and we feel closer to close friends and family when it is released. Serotonin is a mood regulated, which means it is responsible for our good moods and our bad moods, and Endorphins are hormones that mask pain and discomfort and help us power through workouts and achieve our goals.(Buckner)

Stress depletes these chemicals. When we are stressed we produce the stress hormone, cortisol. Cortisol depletes our levels serotonin and dopamine--chemicals that affect our motivation, and susceptibility to depression and anxiety. It’s normal to deal with stress, but it is not easy to deal with. Psychologist, Robert Epstein says “The most important way to manage stress is to prevent it from ever occurring.”- which means planning ahead!

Sources:

Buckner, Clark. "4 Chemicals That Activate Happiness, and How to Use Them."TechnologyAdvice. N.p., 18 Oct. 2017. Web. 01 Feb. 2018.

"Chronic Stress – The Effects On Your Brain." Australian Spinal Research Foundation. N.p., 30 June 2016. Web. 01 Feb. 2018.

Peláez, Marina Watson. "Plan Your Way to Less Stress, More Happiness." Time. Time, 31 May 2011. Web. 01 Feb. 2018.

Getting in the Habit

10443201_10204271502925609_1769605977399701449_o.jpg

Author: Kelsey Fukuda

As a senior in college, I want to express thankfulness towards my parents for continuously involving me in activities when I was younger.

In middle and high school, they encouraged me to join cheerleading, gymnastics, and ice skating. I admit that it was a lot easier to feel healthy when I was constantly exercising and had home cooked meals for me. When I started college, I had only moved about 15 miles away from home, but I was living in the dorms away from my family.

It was hard adjusting to a life where I was so busy with school work and I felt like I didn’t have the time or energy to maintain healthy habits.

 

In my junior year I started running with my roommate on a consistent basis. When you exercise with a friend, there’s a lot of joint motivation and you try to keep each other accountable. Now, in my senior year, my roommate stopped running but I’ve continued going. This is a huge contrast from what my life used to be like. Before, I used to think that exercising without being on a team or without a coach would be scary and difficult.

Looking back, I think the hardest thing about habits is introducing new ones into your life. It’s disruptive when you’ve become comfortable with something else. The next hardest thing is maintaining what you are doing when you start doing things right. However, just forcing myself to start leading a healthier lifestyle was a huge factor in improving how I feel now. Setting goals for myself that I felt like I could achieve greatly improved my mindset. Studies find that exercising is so good for your health AND your brain! Aerobic exercise improves brain function. Running in particular is associated with cell growth in the hippocampus (part of the brain related to learning and memory).

giphy.gif

My other habit I had issues with that I’m still working on involves cooking. My dad loves to cook, so before I moved away for college I hardly ever went out to eat. Last year I was talking with a classmate about desiring to cook my own meals more. She exclaimed that she recently started cooking her own meals and gave me a few tips: have a few favorite recipes, compile recipe lists for grocery shopping, and meal prep whenever possible.

One study found that cooking at home is both healthier and cheaper. Home cooked meals are associated with greater dietary compliance. Making home cooked meals has so many benefits and I want to get better at making it a habit! In relation to the brain, cooking helps people organize, prioritize, sustain focus, solve problems, retrieve memories and multitask.

My main takeaway for getting in the habit of exercising or cooking: if you have time, just do it! These habits are both better for you and they make you feel better yourself.

Sources:

https://www.brainhq.com/brain-resources/everyday-brain-fitness/physical-exercise  

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/03/170314150926.htm

https://healthybrains.org/cooking-cognition-making-meal-good-brain

Being a Gymnast

Author: Catherine Bennion

As a semi-serious gymnast, I can easily say that there is no other relief like the relief that comes from exercise. There are few feelings greater than reaching a goal that I have been working towards for a while, or leaving a good workout feeling proud and accomplished. Being in school, I often go to practice after a long and stressful day and the last thing I want to do is exercise. It seems like too much, and a waste of time when I could be doing other things to reduce stress. Though after practice, I always leave feeling accomplished and free of stress, and exercise was a great distraction for all of the many other things going on in my life. This is because exercise triggers the release of chemicals in your body such as serotonin, norepinephrine, endorphins, dopamine. These chemicals dull pain, release stress, and make you happier. Not only will exercise make you feel better, but exercising even just once a week is great for your physical health.

Not only is exercise good for your physical health, but it is overwhelmingly great for your brain as well. Increased level of exercise are linked to decreases in depression, better memory, and faster learning. Additionally, recent studies have shown that exercising is the best way to prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer's. Though it is not clear why, scientists know that exercise changes the structure of the brain for the better. It increases blood flow to the brain which helps to promote the growth of new brain cells. It also triggers the release a protein in the brain called BDNF that triggers the growth of new neurons and helps to mend and protect the brain from regeneration.

I have been doing gymnastics for 12 years now and I can easily say that I have never regretted going to practice, though I have regretted not going. Exercise is one of the best releases for stress, as well as improving self-esteem and making you feel great! Next time you have an hour to spare, consider doing something active; go for a run or bike ride, take a yoga class or go for a swim, whatever works for you.

Sources:

http://time.com/4474874/exercise-fitness-workouts/

In the Blink of an Eye

Recently I got the chance to meet with one of Plus One’s grant recipients, Mary. Back in 2007, Mary had just given birth to her twin daughters eight days earlier, when in a blink of an eye her life changed forever.  Mary suffered from a brain aneurysm and was then rushed in to have an emergency brain surgery and fell into a coma for three months.  

 

Of course before meeting Mary I did a little research on brain aneurysms and here is what I found. A brain aneurysm is s a weak bulging spot on the wall of a brain artery, when the aneurysm ruptures it allows blood to escape into the space around the brain. About 30,000 people in the United States suffer a brain aneurysm rupture, or there is a brain aneurysm rupturing every 18 minutes. Ruptured brain aneurysms are fatal in about 40% of cases. Of those who survive, about 66% suffer some permanent neurological deficit.

 

Needless to say Mary’s life has changed drastically since her brain aneurysm. She had to relearn all the basic things that we take for granted like walking, talking, and breathing. Mary does one-on-one Mobility and Balance training with a physical instructor, Sue. These sessions are so Mary can work on her strength, balance, and mobility. I got to meet with Mary during one of her sessions and got to learn how Sue is such an important part in Mary’s rehabilitation.

 

Sue does a lot to help Mary. One thing Sue does is since Mary is no longer able to drive, Sue drives to Mary’s house once a week for their sessions. Mary gets distracted easily and Sue is always thinking of new ways to keep her attention. One way she does this is through music. Mary danced and sang to Bruce Springsteen for almost the entire session and she absolutely loved it.  Another thing that Sue realized keeps Mary focused is numbers, when doing a certain exercise if Sue didn’t tell her to do a certain amount Mary would get distracted and start talking to me. But the moment Sue told Mary “Ok now do five more” Mary would instantly get motivated and would start counting in French!

 

My favorite part of going to Mary’s session with Sue was at the very end when Mary told me her goal to run again. Mary used to run on the UW cross country team and could run a half mile in TWO minutes. Since the brain aneurysm, Mary has had to relearn how to walk and now that she has got that down she wants to get back to doing the thing she loved, running. At the end of the session Mary ‘jogged’ across her living room and she had the largest smile on her face.

 

While talking with the two of them, I could see that Mary and Sue had become friends in their time together. And to end this I would like to quote Sue and Mary. Sue told me “My favorite part of working with Mary is her great sense of humor” to which Mary responded “You can’t get through life without being able to laugh” Even though Mary’s life changed so drastically and so quickly she remembers to laugh. And this reminds me that everything I do for Plus One is to help people like Mary smile again and find some hope and laughter in their lives.

 

If you are interested in learning more about brain aneurysms check out http://www.bafound.org/

 

Chelsea Husted

Plus One Foundation

Intern

Mary "jogging"

Making Connections - Music Therapy

April is a big month for Plus One Foundation. We, as a team were able to take a moment and reflect on our first anniversary -- what has been accomplished and the positive feedback we have been receiving from not only our Grant Recipients but also the service providers we work with. From art therapy to therapeutic horseback riding, we are still always surprised and pleased at how non-traditional medical methods can produce positive results for individuals living with a neurological condition. One approach that has garnished some recent media coverage is that of music therapy. Below is an overview of those who have seen positive effects, what music therapy is, and the Plus One Foundations support of this therapy. Earlier this year congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, was interviewed in a few different segments by CBS and ABC focusing on how music therapy was able to help her regain parts of her speech and the ability to walk again. What is important about Giffords recovery is that it brought music therapy to the forefront as we are able to witness first hand her struggles with speech, to her overall progress of stringing words together. This is a pretty remarkable feat and all accomplished with the love of music. For a more detailed account on Giffords recovery and the use of music therapy I would suggest this article written by Emily Sohn from the Discovery News: http://news.discovery.com/human/gabrielle-giffords-photos-111116.html.

Defined by the American Music Therapy Association (AMTA), Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.

Music therapy interventions can be designed to: Promote Wellness Manage Stress Alleviate Pain Express Feelings Enhance Memory Improve Communication Promote Physical Rehabilitation

It seems pretty evident while there are case studies that support the theory that music therapy can produce positive results, the medical community is still split on whether there is enough concrete data that music therapy does indeed work. However, this has not stopped the growth of music therapy even in the Seattle community. Swedish Hospital uses music therapy to treat their cancer patients, and complementary therapies including art, massage and meditation: http://www.swedish.org/Services/Cancer-Institute/Services/Complementary-Therapies/Music-Therapy#axzz1rrpK1l98

I watched a great video about Seattle local David Knott and his work over at Children's Hospital. Watching the short news clip leaves no doubt that music therapy can help alleviate pain and anxiety, but also allow a child to connect the dots. To read more: http://www.seattlechildrens.org/videos/healthlink-music-therapy/.

A great resource for Washington State certified Music Therapist is the Music Therapy Association of Washington (MTAW). http://www.musictherapywa.org/info/. MTAW is dedicated to providing resources and a connection point for professional music therapists, students, and others interested in learning about and promoting music therapy in the state of Washington. Included on their web site is a directory for Music Therapy providers: http://www.musictherapywa.org/info/directory-of-music-therapists.

Reading further, I found that the first and only program for becoming a certified music therapist in the state of Washington is at Seattle Pacific University. http://www.spu.edu/depts/fpa/music/therapy/. According to the programs documentation Music Therapy is a growing field where finding a qualified/certified therapist can be challenging. For more information on SPU's music therapy program visit: http://www.spu.edu/depts/fpa/music/therapy/index.asp.

What does this mean for Plus One? Well it means we are excited for the opportunity to help our grant recipients take advantage of music therapy, and the positive effects it will have on the recovery process. If you or someone you know is interested in a music therapy program please feel free to contact us for more information, or fill out our Occasions program application http://www.plusonefoundation.com/occasions.html.

If you are also a trained music therapist we would love to talk to you about your services.

Mark Nieves Board Member Plus One Foundation

Superbowl: Safety Shouldn't be Secondary

With college football signing day this week and the NFL Super Bowl days away all topics football have been circulating in the media. I have read headlines that cover everything from game predictions, Madonna's halftime show and of course the commercials. The only event I am aware of where more people are more interested in the commercial breaks than the actual game. Regardless, one CNN broadcast that caught my eye was the recent release of Dr. Sanjay Gupta's documentary "Big Hits, Broken Dreams," which aired this last Sunday, January 29th, on CNN. Dr. Sanjay has been observing a North Carolina high school football team's players and exploring "Second Impact Syndrome". This syndrome is defined as another concussion that is sustained after the initial concussion has not fully healed. The documentary also highlights the story of a 17-year-old from Kansas, Nathan Stiles. Nathan passed away after a hit on the final game of the season during his senior year. In the end, Nathan was diagnosed with Second impact syndrome. It certainly was a tragedy in the loss of a young man who was not only skilled on the football field but also a straight A student, homecoming king, and overall great kid. But Nathan was able to help and assist in the advancement of the studies of brain injuries sustained by athletes as his brain was donated to the Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy located at the Boston University School of Medicine, also known as "The Brain Bank".

Nathan was not the first athlete to have his brain donated for research. As of last October more than 500 current and former U.S. athletes have agreed to donate their brains to research. This research has lead to the confirmation that a disease does exist from the repetitive hits these athletes take. Called Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), it is described as a degenerative disease found in football players and other athletes in contact sports who get repeated hits to their heads. Researches have identified the abundance of tau proteins in the brain. This is the same protein found in the brains of Alzheimer's patients. Players may experience memory loss, emotional instability, erratic behavior, depression and impulse control problems, progressing eventually to full-blown dementia. Unfortunately, there are many retired sports athletes who played contact sports dealing with these symptoms today.

The good news is now the medical and neuroscience communities can begin to focus on how to prevent these injuries; in particular, identifying a player earlier who shows the symptoms of a concussion and thus being able to prevent a more serious long-term head or nervous system injury.

NFL players old and new have recognized the importance of these studies and are participating in research with the ultimate donation, their brains. Three active players in 2009 publicly committed to donating their brains to help with this research. Baltimore Ravens center Matt Birk, Seattle Seahawks linebacker Lofa Tatupu, and Arizona Cardinals receiver Sean Morey were the first active players to publicly endorse the studies. It is considered taboo for an active professional player to even insinuate of possible injury as it could effect their career.

What is clear that since the start of the Brain Bank in 2008, we have learned more about these sports injuries than ever before and I am confident these studies can help and assist in the prevention and/or recovery across all types of neurological disorders. It is also great for Plus One foundation as the work they are doing directly relates to the people we touch. But most importantly these studies can empower players, trainers, and coaches to correctly identify concussions before serious injury occurs. As a sports fan, I certainly enjoy the game but also want for everyone to leave the field safely.

Enjoy the commercials (and the game),

Mark Plus One Foundation