As we age, the fragility and flexibility of our memories becomes clear. Many of us fear losing our precious memories and wish†to combat growing forgetfulness. Fear not. These six lifestyle hacks can assist in improving your health and keeping your brain healthy well into old age.
Keep your body moving. Physical activity stimulates neurons and proper action of the synapses. This means regular exercise is paramount for a healthy mind and memory capacity. Not a fitness fiend? You donít have to beóyou just have to get yourself moving. Your best bet is to find activities that you enjoy. Whether it is gardening, yoga, long walks or tennis, your body will thrive if you let it move.
Be lighthearted. Stress, in the form of cortisol, harms the body and hinders its capacity for memory. Laughter is an obvious stress deterrent, keeping the brain out of a state of cortisol-induced panic. So donít be afraid to crack a joke now and again! Joking, smiling and laughing also all improve oxytocin levels in the body, the feel-good love hormone that has been shown to strengthen emotional memories.
Sleep. Getting a good nightís sleep on a consistent basis is integral to memory health. Sleeping protects the formation and storage of new memories from the distractions of wakefulness. This means your brain is able to powder down and begin to file and process all of the new data it received that day. In memory studies, groups who experienced a full nightís sleep fared far better on memory tasks than those who were skimping on sleep.
Eat the right foods. To start, increased consumption of vegetables and berries have been associated with lower rates of dementia and improved cognition. Seafood, or supplemental forms of omega-3s, are also important. Healthy fat intake is essential for the brain to create myelin, which protects the fragile connections between brain cells. Consuming a vast spectrum of minerals and high-quality protein is also incredibly important. Additionally, eating high sugar foods, like sodas, is associated with early onset dementia and poor memory.
Meditate. There are already 101 reasons why mediation is amazing for you, but here is another one. According to a study, a groups of students was asked to take the GRE as well as tests for memory and focus. Students who learned about mindfulness techniques and meditation for 8 days prior to the test fared far better than students who took a course in nutrition for those 8 days. Mediation is a powerful tool in your arsenal. With the Internet slowing destroying our attention spans and memory capacity, itís time to combat mental decay with meditation.
Snag a hug. Again, hugging increases oxytocin levels in the body. Oxytocin works to reduce stress levels, which helps improve memory. In laymanís terms: hugs make you feel good. Feeling good improves your ability to remember things. Bottom line: snag as many hugs as possible.
Living a balanced lifestyle can do wonders for your memory and brain health. Not only will you be happier and better off, but youíll keep your memory churning at full capacity!