Brain fitness is a term used to describe cognitive abilities (memory, knowledge, problem solving, thought process). In order for the brain to keep fit, like the rest of the body, it must get proper nutrition and regular exercise, or it will deteriorate. No less important, we need to stay socially and mentally active and reduce stress.
Brain fitness declines as we age. Our cognitive powers begin to fade and years of neglect will catch up with us.
But it's not too late to stop that decline! By following these healthy life style tips you can improve your mind:
Exercise is effective in improving depression. Serotonin is a chemical in the brain that affects mood. Studies indicate that an intensive exercise program can raise serotonin levels and help those suffering from depression.
Exercise stimulates the release of endorphins into our blood system. Endorphins are hormones that are released in response to stress or pain. In addition to reducing stress and pain, they help improve memory, help improve blood circulation, and aid the immune system.
Studies show that older adults who are highly fit have faster reaction times because they have better concentration and are more able to focus their attention on relevant information.
Aerobic activity is especially beneficial for memory skills.
Free radicals occur naturally and destroy all types of cells throughout the body. But brain cells are more vulnerable to damage and with age their destruction can play a major role in reducing our ability to form memory and recall. Antioxidants inhibit the production of free radicals.
Dark skinned colorful fruits and vegetables are excellent foods for protecting brain cells against free radicals because of their high antioxidant levels.
Omega-3 is essential for brain fitness, but cannot be manufactured by our body. Cold water fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna, herring, sardines, anchovies) are excellent sources of Omega-3. Evidence has shown Omega-3 to have a mood stabilizing effect as well as an antidepressant effect. Walnuts are also very good sources of Omega-3.
"Diets rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids fight disease and contribute to overall better health. Over 60 health conditions have been shown to benefit from essential fatty acid supplementation.">|
--National Research Council.
B-12, found in red meat, eggs, poultry, fish, may prevent brain volume loss.
Whole grain foods such as brown rice, oatmeal , barley whole grain breads, and popcorn are excellent sources of carbohydrates, which are broken down to glucose, the brain's primary fuel source. Whole grains supply us with Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant as well as iron and B vitamins, which are also vital for brain fitness.
Extra virgin olive oil has a high concentration of Vitamin E.
Avocado is a healthy fat that contributes to healthy blood flow. It's also rich in antioxidants.
Brain fitness can be achieved by learning new things and pursuing intellectually stimulating activities.
By enriching our brain with new knowledge throughout our lives the number of cells will increase and the connections between them will continue to strengthen, regardless of age.
Tips for improving cognitive skills :
Specific tips to improve memory:
Spend Time With Other People