As you age, so does your brain. Most people in their 60s or 70s experience some form of cognitive problem, which is usually memory loss. Depending on genetics and lifestyle choices, these changes can even occur much earlier. And of course, there are conditions like dementia that severely damage a person’s cognitive functions over time.
Fortunately, there are ways to mitigate such changes. By maintaining optimal brain health, you can keep your memory, focus, comprehension, and awareness skills sharp even into retirement age.
Here are some effective ways to do just that:
1. Take Supplements
Your trusted physician can provide advice on what supplements to take to keep your brain healthy. These can come in a variety of formulations designed to provide specific benefits. They’re usually taken as food supplements. However, some formulations tackle cognitive function directly.
These are known as nootropics. Also called cognitive enhancers or ‘smart drugs,’ these aim to augment specific mental functions like concentration and memory. Many prescription nootropics are used to treat disorders like dementia. But non-prescription nootropics are also available.
Aniracetam and noopept are popular choices. All their benefits, dosages, side effects, and legal status are compared here. Make sure to consult your doctor before considering the use of nootropics.
2. Exercise Regularly
Bodily exercise significantly impacts your brain health. For one, it reduces the risk of mental decline by improving blood flow to the brain.
It may also be the key to mitigating the development of serious disorders like Alzheimer’s disease. The cause of this condition remains a mystery, though it has been observed to be the result of an abnormal buildup of certain proteins around your brain cells. Regular exercise can help reduce these harmful proteins and maintain healthy brain function.
Exercise also helps build new nerve cells, increasing neural connectivity. As a result, your mental performance improves, leading to better mood regulation, increased energy levels, greater motivation, and more.
3. Get Enough Sleep
Another critical factor for a healthy brain is sleep. This not only rejuvenates the body but the brain, as well.
The seven-to-eight rule for rest still holds for most adults. During sleep, the brain repairs all damaged cells and removes waste products that hinder its function. So, the more sleep you get, the more your brain can prepare itself for daily activity. This simple task boosts your memory, increases focus, and helps you achieve high productivity.
Here are some tips to get the optimal amount of sleep:
- Have a pre-bedtime routine.
- Ditch your electronics thirty minutes before you go to bed or earlier.
- Take ten to fifteen minutes to meditate before your sleep time. It helps to calm your brain, making it easier to fall asleep.
4. Eat A Balanced Diet
Dieting is another crucial factor for your brain’s health. Ensure your diet consists of food that is low-fat, mineral and nutrient-rich, and full of chemicals like Omega 3 fatty acids. Vitamins are also helpful.
The Mediterranean diet is famous for focusing on foods with these characteristics, like fish, tomatoes, and leafy greens. Talk to your doctor for more about your diet options.
5. Stay Mentally Active
Both stress and lethargy harm your brain. It’s important to give it healthy stimulation to decompress as well as stay active.
The best way to do this is to play games. Chess, crossword, jigsaw puzzles, and dominoes are great examples. These are well-known as brain ticklers and provide an easy way to relieve stress while flexing mental muscles.
6. Nourish Your Bonds
Social wellness has an impact on your brain’s health. Happiness found in friends and family has been shown to be integral in keeping cognitive functions sharp. The more positive experiences one has in their relationships, the healthier their brains tend to be. That’s one good reason to spend more time with the people you love.
7. Try Out New Things
Challenging your brain to try new things is essential for keeping it active.
You don’t even have to go too far from the things you already know. All you need is some exploration to keep your mind stimulated and open.
For instance, if you love cooking, you can try recipes from cuisines you’ve been interested in but never tried. Start a garden or buy an aquarium. Memorize new songs, or even step out of the genres and artists you’re familiar with. These little things accomplish the same end: introducing your brain to a new world of stimuli. This encourages the growth of new connections, which keeps the brain tissue strong and dynamic.
These steps may seem inconsequential at first. But as you age, you’ll find they’ve done way more than you can imagine to keeping your brain sharp and active. Consistency is key. Remember to always talk to your doctor to get the best advice for optimum brain health.