Just like any other part of the body, the brain needs regular exercise to maintain good health. For example, consider marathon runners. Without daily runs and physical activity, they would have a challenging time keeping up with others on the race day. Runners must exercise regularly to stay healthy and in shape. Think of the brain like any other muscle in the body — it requires exercise and maintenance to perform at its highest level.
Keeping the mind active with natural stimulation helps create a new nerve cell connection, which can boost new cell generation and a high-functioning brain. Read on to find out simple ways to improve your brain power naturally.
Physical exercise isn’t just for runners — it’s also an essential component to a healthy mind! Did you know that you run the risk of developing Dementia and other cognitive disorders without engaging in regular physical activity? Exercise increases your brain’s oxygen levels, which reduces illnesses that cause memory loss and mental deterioration. Exercise also releases hormones that alleviate feelings of stress and depression called endorphins.
Did you have a stressful day at work and can’t seem to shake it all off? Consider a brisk walk around the neighbourhood to help you calm down. Doctors recommend getting in about 150 minutes per week of physical activity. Even just walking around the house every hour or so can help stimulate brain activity.
A Healthy Diet (With Lots of Omega-3s)
The brain is the control centre of the body, facilitating everything from pumping blood through the body to ensuring your taste buds are working. It would help if you kept the brain in peak condition by eating nourishing, mind-optimizing foods. Did you know that the right amount of Omega-3s (the fatty acids found in certain foods) can fight inflammation in the brain? Omega-3s have also been known to reduce the risk of age-related mental declines, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia.
You can find healthy doses of Omega-3s in items such as:
- Oily Fish (for example, salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring)
- Nuts and Seeds (for example, flax seeds, walnuts, chia seeds)
- Omega-enriched Eggs
Aside from Omega-3, other foods to incorporate into your diet include items loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, such as turmeric (the yellow, curry-like spice) and blueberries. Turmeric may help improve memory in Alzheimer’s patients because it may help clear the amyloid plaques associated with the disease. You can sprinkle some of the spice in your cooking — it’s excellent in a stir-fry — or even add it to your smoothies.
Give Your Brain a Workout
One of the best ways to keep your mind active is to challenge it. Give that New York Times crossword puzzle a try once a week! Download a language-learning app and spend ten minutes every morning discovering how to say animal names in German. There are endless possibilities to wake up the brain. The hardest part is to start the activity.
Once you get going, you won’t want to stop! It will become a part of your daily routine, and you’ll notice that your mind will feel sharper and more alert.
By eating well, exercising a little, and continuing to learn new things, you’ll encourage a healthy brain, and thus, a healthy life.