It’s not that long ago when experts believe that optimal brain function was at its peak during the early adulthood years and it declined subsequently leading to mental fog and memory lapses in later years.
That’s all changed now thanks to research. Studies seem to indicate that modern lifestyles are major contributors to mental health decline, especially when you may be exposed to toxins, suffer from stress, don’t sleep enough, and follow a poor diet. All these things ultimately lead to the hindrance of the brain function.
On the other end of the spectrum, people who tend to live healthy lifestyles also tend to have better brain health. Neurogenesis is the process where the brain grows new neurons, and this process is normally more active in healthy individuals.
The brain’s memory center is known as the hippocampus. The hippocampus triggers new cell growth and constantly regenerates them during a person’s lifetime.
All these tools are directly influenced by a person’s lifestyle. There is no prescription medicine as such which will work to boost your brain functionality and improve your memory.
I have laid out an easy to follow plan that is designed to enhance your memory.
Eat the Right Foods
The foods that you eat play a direct role on your memory. For example, fresh vegetables along with healthy fats are a good place to start. Foods to avoid include sugars, and grainy carbohydrates.
Certain foods are powerful antioxidants such as cauliflower, broccoli, celery, walnuts, and curry. They possess compounds that work to protect neurological health, and some experts believe that they even trigger the production of new cells.
Omega-3 fat intake in the form of animal-based foods should be increased, and omega-6 fat intake should be reduced so there is a healthy balance. I personally prefer Krill oil, because it is rich in Astaxanthin, which shields omega-3 fats from oxidation.
By exercising regularly helps to encourage your brain to work at its optimal capacity by stimulating cells which then multiply, ultimately strengthening the interconnections between them and protecting from any type of damage.
Neurotrophic factors are proteins that are released during exercise. The brain derived neurotrophic factor triggers other chemicals responsible for promoting neural health. A recent study used to primates as subjects and found that regular exercise enhanced blood flow to the brain, and the subjects’ learning capacities multiplied when compared to non-exercising subjects.
Other studies seem to suggest that regular exercising can actually increase the size of the brain’s memory centre by up to 2% a year.
Experts advise that to get the most out of your workouts, high intensity interval training, core work, stretching, and resistance training must all be incorporated.
Multitasking has been a part of human life for centuries. It is utilized to save time by performing more than one task at a time, and this often leaves a person prone to making errors and forgetting things.
Research indicates that the human brain needs around eight seconds of focus before that information is stored within the memory. So if you’re talking on your phone, whilst driving or carrying your shopping home, and in the process you put your keys somewhere, you are unlikely to remember where.
The opposite end of multitasking would be being mindful. Mindfulness basically means uninterrupted mental focus. Students who took part in mindfulness classes found that the reading comprehension and exam results were greatly enhanced without all the distractions.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is known to enhance memory. By depriving yourself of sleep, you are hindering your ability to work and think clearly over the next few days. Neuroplasticity is when the brain grows in capacity. Neuroplasticity normally occurs when the neurons are stimulated by certain events, certain information, or being in a certain environment. Sleep hindrance can severely impact certain genes that are important for this process.
Take Part in Mind Games
The brain needs to be constantly stimulated with new information, otherwise it will begin to deteriorate. Research seems to indicate that the brain requires sufficient stimulus that will work against any type of degeneration.
A great way of doing this would be to take part in brain games which you can play online or by a paper-based version. Try to invest at least 20 minutes a day on each specific task. Hopefully, this will keep the brain active and enhance your learning potential.
Acquire New Skills
Constantly learning and acquiring new skills is a great way of stimulating the neurological system that actively works against a stress related conditions such as dementia. A great way of improving the brain function and pro-actively reversing functional decline is the level of seriousness you do it with. In other words, a task must be interesting to you for it to keep you engaged throughout the process.
Even the seemingly menial tasks such as knitting have shown to decrease cognitive degeneration. On the other hand, cognitively demanding activities such as painting or modern photography are great memory function enhancers. You need to think of what mentally stimulus you and give that activity your undivided attention.