The average human brain is reduced by approx 5% in ten years After 40 years. This has a great effect on memory and concentration.
But severe mental decline doesn’t have to be part of aging. in fact, Some lifestyles Your genes have more of an impact on whether or not you develop memory-related diseases.
As a neuroscientist, here are seven hard rules I follow to keep my brain sharp and fight dementia.
Your heart beats approximately 115,000 times a day, and with each beat it sends 20% of the oxygen to your brain.
High blood pressure can weaken your heart muscle, and it is one The main causes of stroke. Ideally, your blood pressure should not exceed 120/80.
Cholesterol is very important for the health of your brain and nervous system. of American Heart Association He recommends getting your cholesterol measured every four to six years.
Blood sugar is the brain’s primary fuel. It is not enough, and you have no energy; Too much, and you can destroy the blood vessels and tissues, which to Premature aging and cardiovascular disease.
Remember that sugar is not the enemy. Too much It is sugar. Even if you think carefully, it’s easy to add grams of sugar—and sugar often sneaks into packaged foods.
Where is the sugar hidden? Look for these ingredients in the list:
And beware of products that contain syrup, such as agave nectar syrup or high-fructose corn syrup.
Research shows that people with untreated sleep apnea They increase their chances of remembering 10 years before the general population.
For most people, a healthy brain needs between seven and nine hours of sleep a night.
My tips for memory-boosting, immune-boosting sleep:
- Maintain a consistent bedtime and wake-up schedule.
- Turn off devices an hour before bed.
- Do something relaxing before bed, such as listening to soft music or doing breathing exercises.
- After you wake up, get outside as soon as you can and get some natural sunlight.
One way I keep things simple is to have most, if not all, of these items in my grocery store:
- Fatty fish like salmon
- Cruciferous vegetables such as arugula, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and collard greens
When shopping for food, I ask myself three questions to make sure I have something good for my brain:
1. Does it break down? In many cases, it is a good thing that can go wrong. Additives and preservatives that prevent food from spoiling can wreak havoc on your gut bacteria.
2. Are there tons of ingredients in that packaged food? And for that matter, can you name the ingredients? Or does it look like a chemical experiment? Also, if sugar is one of the first few ingredients, avoid anything.
3. Do you see a rainbow on your plate? Chemicals The colors they give to fruits and vegetables help improve mental health.
Smokers have one 30% higher risk More likely to develop dementia than non-smokers. They also endanger those around them: secondhand smoke contains 7,000 chemicals – and At least 70 of these can cause cancer.
Then there’s third-party smoke that isn’t smoke. It is the residue of cigarette smoke that creates a peculiar smell on clothes or in the room. That alone can do the rest. They release chemicals which are toxic to the brain.
According to a recent study, people over the age of 55 regularly attend dinner parties or other social events Low risk of memory loss. But it’s not because of what they eat, it’s the result of repeated social interactions.
They can increase brain chemicals like serotonin and endorphins to reduce isolation and loneliness. By performing small acts of kindness:
- Wish others well or wish with someone.
- Give thanks without expecting anything in return.
- Call someone you don’t see often.
Maintaining a strong memory isn’t just about brain games like sudoku, word puzzles, and crossword puzzles.
Learning knowledge and acquiring information are more effective ways to create new connections in the mind. The more connections you make, the more likely you are to retain and enhance your memory.
When thinking about learning something new, approach it the same way you would exercise. You want to work different muscles on different days. The same is true for the mind.
During this week, try to train your brain by combining mental activities (learning a new language or reading a book) and physical activities (playing tennis or soccer).
Mark MilsteinPhD is a mental health expert and author. “The Age-Proofing Brain: New Strategies to Improve Memory, Protect the Immune System, and Fight Dementia.” He received both his doctorate in biological chemistry and his bachelor of science in molecular, cellular and developmental biology from UCLA, where he conducted research in genetics, cancer biology and neuroscience. Follow him. Twitter And Instagram.
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