We worry about our looks and our bodies on a daily basis. Think about how many guys and gals undergo surgery to look better. How many people go to the doctor because they have a stomach ache or a bad knee.

The real diamond that most people disregard is their beautiful brain. Often, people don’t think about their brain and its proper function until is too late. Most of the real problems you have with your brain are not noticeable! Do you ever notice whether your concentration and focus are consistently on point? Whether your memory has been steadily declining? Most likely not.

You are your brain. Your brain controls every aspect of your life! EVERYTHING, so you need to take care of it. To have a good life, you must have a good brain. A healthy brain leads to a happier, healthier, smarter life. You make better decisions and have better relationships.

10 symptoms that can indicate your brain is in trouble

1 – Poor memory
Most people attribute having a bad memory to getting older. Like it is a normal, healthy thing for your mental acuity to decline. That is NOT TRUE! Yes, many people lose recall as they get older but it is a PREVENTABLE problem. Think of how many sharp older people you know that remember things as if they were 20. Guess what? That can be YOU. If your memory is not as good as it was 10 years ago, it may be a sign that your body isn’t functioning as well as it could.

2 – Poor decision making – being too impulsive
I frequently see people repeatedly making the wrong decisions in their lives. One after another. This is not healthy behavior. In fact, the quality of your life is determined by the quality of the decisions you make. Unfortunately people with brain function issues get so accustomed to making bad decisions. They start believing that is the way things are and blame their misfortunes on the world around them. One of the main reasons people make bad decisions is because they let impulsive behavior take control. The more impulsive you are the less time you give your rational brain (cerebral cortex) to make a more calculated decisions. Having poor decision making abilities is a sign of brain malfunction. Some reasons why this might happen include poor blood flow to the brain, low blood sugar, lack of sleep, or drugs and alcohol.

3 – Too distracted
There are two mental conditions that are growing rapidly in the world: Attention deficit disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD). These conditions are associated with a low activity in the frontal cortex, the area responsible for higher cognitive function and decision making. The problems associated with a lack of attention include: academic underachievement, problems at work, relationship problems and very often a lack of a defined purpose or goals. If you feel you are constantly distracted, take a step back and try to figure out why.

4 – Low focus and concentration
Low focus or concentration is highly correlated with being distracted and having low attention spans but not always. Stress, worry and having a busy life can also decrease your focus and concentration. Your brain could be overloaded. There is only so much the human brain can process on a daily basis.

5 – Feeling off (depressed, sad, angry)
Having negative feelings, like being depressed, sad, or angry, is normal. It is almost impossible to not experience these feelings once in a while. The problem is when these feelings don’t go away. These emotions are sneaky. So, you may not realize that they are happening to you. If you can’t see it, then pay attention to external cues like your partner or friends pointing it out to you. Being depressed lowers your overall brain activity. It has killed millions of people and is a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, obesity and much more. Many things can trigger or influence depression, including a traumatic event, drugs, alcohol, nutrition, brain infections or a persistent lack of sleep. Boosting your brain function is a good way to fight depression. But, the good news is that mood disorders are not only treatable with medication but also with good nutrition exercise and appropriate natural supplements.

6 – Having low energy
More often than not, the reason people feel they have low energy is due to low brain function. This can lead to the other symptoms we mentioned above, like low concentration, lower mood and bad memory. Many things can influence having low energy including sleep, infections, toxins, drugs, low blood sugar, low blood pressure, emotional trauma and poor exercise. Fortunately, it’s easy to boost your brains energy and get back on track.  My favorite way is exercising.

7 – Being overweight or obese
Yes, believe it or not, obesity or being overweight can have a profound effect on your brain. A third of Americans are affected by obesity and overweight. Being overweight increases the chances of many diseases including cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. Although overeating is not considered a mental disorder, studies suggest that it is 100% an addictive behavior. If you compare brain scans of an obese person with those of a drug addict, they are almost indistinguishable. Being obese not only shrinks the size of your brain, as research has shown, but it also creates changes at the genetic level by affecting the way your genes are expressed. Other studies have shown that as your weight goes up your thinking abilities go down. This can turn into a vicious cycle because it affects your ability to control your activities. Your eating habits are a critical factor in maintaining a healthy brain. You must take control of them.

8 – Lack of sleep
Sleep is the activity that consumes the greatest amount of our time as human beings. Yet is one of the most disregarded. Too often, we sacrifice sleep to accommodate other activities. A lack of sleep, or even sleep apnea, are signs that you may have a troubled brain. Research has shown that people who lack sleep (usually less than 7 hours per day) have lower cognitive function. Many things can influence your sleep disorder such as your mood, being depressed, stressed or anxious.  The effects of not sleeping can be devastating. Studies with NASA pilots have shown that a 20-30 minute nap can increase productivity by 25%! Many things are affected by lack of sleep from behavioral problems to physical problem. You must find the time to get adequate rest even if it means napping for 30 minutes once in a while.

9 – Sexual dysfunction
This one might come as a surprise to you. Sexual dysfunction in men and women can be a sign of a brain in trouble! In your normal everyday life, your brain gets a tremendous amount of your blood—about 25% of it, in fact. Sexual dysfunction is usually a problem related to low blood flow. If your heart isn’t pumping as much blood as it should, your sexual performance may decline. Guess what that means? Your brain isn’t getting enough blood either!

10 – Feeling anxious or stressed
Being anxious or stressed is a state of mind that you can’t always avoid. Unfortunately, stress can have a huge impact on your brain and overall health. Humans respond to stress by increasing the production of a particular hormone called cortisol.  In constant high concentrations, cortisol can be harmful to your brain and body. Stress can result from many different things including lack of sleep, busy schedules, relationship problems, and work. The good news is that stress is manageable and can be eliminated completely.

What can I do about my troubled brain?

If you pay attention, your brain will tell you it is in trouble. Being conscious about some of the warning signs mentioned above will help you understanding your brain and take action to have a better brain and a better life.

Exercise and diet are among the top things you need to pay attention to help your brain succeed. Processed food and foods high in sugar content are some of the worst foods you can feed your brain. To keep your energy levels from dropping, it is good to exercise for at least 20 minutes a day—no matter how old you are. Keep in mind that most mental diseases occur when you are older as a result of accrued damage. This means that it is important to lead a healthy life, if you want your brain to last. When you’re young you feel invincible. But, all the bad habits, the bad diets and the lack of exercise damage your cells in an almost unnoticeable way until it is too late.

The good news is that the more you learn about how our body and mind work, the more you can understand about how important your mental fitness is and take action. You can thank you brain for that.