Brain Lobes – Breaking Down the Complex Human Brain
The human brain is indeed a complex arrangement of details, comprising enormous numbers of neurons and connections that are almost impossible to wrap one’s head around. However, despite the magnitude of fine details enmeshed in the grand organ, our brains are constructed basically out of a small number of “parts,” or brain lobes, each with a specific duty to handle within the entire whole.
Let’s take a closer look at these segments and how each affects our lives and well-being. Starting from outside and moving in, the brain’s outer layer is the cerebral cortex. This wrinkled surface contains two halves, called hemispheres. They are connected by a bundle of nerves called the corpus callosum. The corpus callosum ensures that both sides of the brain can transmit information back and forth, which they do for a variety of things, including motor, sensory, and cognitive functions. Each hemisphere of the brain is divided into four brain lobes: Frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital; and each has a distinct role.
The Parietal Lobe–Feeling it
If you enjoy the sensation of a massage, the flavor of a well-prepared meal, or the feel of cold or warm air on your skin, the parietal lobe is responsible for these simple pleasures. The lobe, which is located centrally in the brain hemisphere, is responsible for translating touch, taste, and temperature considerations, as well as less pleasurable sensory input such as pain and pressure. In addition to simply registering these sensations, the lobe also categorizes more sophisticated aspects, such as where the input is coming from and what exact kind or degree of stimulation is being received.
The Frontal Lobe–Thinking About it
The frontal lobe is located just as one might expect: In the forefront of the brain dome, just behind our foreheads. Higher mental processes and key functions, such as decision making, planning, memory generation, and voluntary actions take place in this particular section of the brain. Additionally, this is where our ability to maintain an attention span, express ourselves emotionally, and actually cultivate an individual personality resides.
This section of the brain is the newest in terms of evolutionary development, present only in vertebrates, and it’s also the most vulnerable to injury due to its location. It does not grow to full mature size until a person reaches the mid-20s, so any damage that occurs during childhood could have far-reaching effects on overall development.
It also is the site of age-related atrophy, which most individuals gradually start to realize at around age 60 and sustain at a slow rate. Ordinary rates of atrophy contribute to the all-too-familiar bouts of mild memory loss many seniors complain of.
The Temporal Lobe–Hearing it
This lobe is, like the frontal lobe, named intuitively as it is located on either side of the head near the temples. It’s close to the ears, and–again, intuitively–that is where the business resides for this particular brain area. This lobe processes auditory and speech messages and has the ability to make sense of pitch and tone. Additionally, the lobe contains the hippocampus, a horseshoe-shaped component that aids with the relation between short-term and long-term memories, as well as some spatial directives that help us navigate around our daily activities.
The Occipital Lobe–Seeing it
This is the smallest of the brain lobes, and it’s tucked toward the back of the skull where it might be easy to overlook. That said, looking is a main function for this particular area, as the lobe is recognized for visual processes, and is one that most of us rely on quite heavily.
While visual processes might translate as simply the concept “seeing” for many people, the spectrum of functions included in this arena are complex and varied. The lobe processes more obvious visual distinctions such as colors, as well as spatial concerns of depth and size. However, it also draws upon memory and puts stimuli such as familiar faces and objects to work in the overall visual scan. It would be impossible for us to process much of what we see without some framework of visual recollection.
When thinking about how quickly we as humans take in and categorize our surroundings visually, you will understand that this small but amazing lobe must work at lightning speed. It must take the information gathered from our eyes, process it, and then send to the frontal lobe for further clarification. Adding to that, the lobe processes visual stimuli aside from whatever we are directly focusing on, so it truly is doing quite a bit of different work at once!
Keeping Your Brain Lobes in Shape
It’s important to maintain a generally healthy lifestyle with regular exercise, a good diet, adequate rest. Seeking out ways to “train the brain” by trying new things, learning new skills, reading, etc.) is also very important in keeping one’s brain in top shape. Nutritional supplements can help preserve brain health as well.
Nature’s Doctors offers five different organic, plant-based supplements that can be used individually or all together to optimize your brain power. Here are two that directly support the important work your mind takes on daily:
Clarity: This “Smart Supplement,” by definition, helps to improve mental functions such as cognition, memory, intelligence, motivation, attention, and concentration, and can help prevent or reverse cognitive decline (even the kind that naturally occurs with age).
Advanced Formula Sleep: Although the brain continues to work remarkably hard whether we are awake or asleep, sleep is as essential to brain function as water and food. Unfortunately, a large percentage of adults have occasional or chronic issues with their sleeping patterns. This all-natural supplement provides a pure, refreshing night’s sleep, allowing toxicity to leave the brain.