13 May Three Brain-Boosting Exercises To Try Today!
The brain may not be a muscle, but you can certainly treat it like one. The good news is that brain ‘workouts’ are proven to help. A study published in the Neurobiology of Aging showed that doing cognitive exercises makes the brain more “energy efficient”, which means it has to work less to perform a task. This means that it can be in top shape for longer. And let’s face it, these brain ‘workouts’ are becoming increasingly important as more people live longer. Maryville University in their outlook for general studies graduates believe that the aging population will be a key reason why U.S. healthcare is expected to increase by 18% by 2026. And as this aging population is likely to spend longer in employment, they will also look to find ways to ensure their brains stay healthy for as long as possible. A good memory not only means a better quality of life, it is also a sign that the person followed a holistically healthy life. In this article we look at simple brain ‘workouts’ that help keep your memory sharp and healthy no matter what your age.
• Reading! Reading a good (or bad) book is one the simplest brain exercises to improve memory. This is because reading slows the rate of memory deterioration through testing the brain’s memory and thinking skills. Even more important it can lower the chance of Alzheimer’s. Read on a regular basis to keep the memory sharp.
• Puzzles! Puzzles have long been found to benefit the brain (and befuddle the mind). There are a wide variety of puzzles that can test different areas of the brain. Chess is perhaps the most famous because it uses both sides of the brain, and memory is one of the most important skills needed to become a competent player. While chess is one of the most effective games/puzzles, it is not the most accessible memory exercise, especially if you come across an annoying opponent. Rather than a brain workout, your mind will melt in frustration. A jigsaw puzzle also uses both sides of the brain and is proven to be a good mind workout that improves problem solving and attention span. You will also avoid aspirin inducing opponents. In an article on the 7 benefits of a jigsaw puzzle on News-Journal, it is explained how a simple puzzle can help improve short-term memory. If you are new to jigsaw puzzles the site recommends starting with a 500-piece puzzle as “they’re designed to strike the perfect balance of challenge and solvability.” On the other hand you could give your mind the ultimate workout and try one of these 1,000+ one-color tone puzzles!
• Relax! Sometimes the best thing to do if you think your memory is poor is to relax. ‘Seven Ways to Improve Your Memory’ on The Guardian, details how stress can significantly impact a person’s ability to recall. The best thing to do is try holistic exercises like mediation and yoga, as they can help retrieve memories that may be difficult to recall due to stress.
There are lots of ways to help sharpen the memory and these aren’t just limited to brain exercises. As we shared in ‘Healthy Food = Healthy Mood’, what you eat can also play an important part in brain health. Flax seeds, chia seeds and food rich in omega 3 are especially good for the mind. Whether you’re a student or a senior citizen there are plenty of simple exercises you can do to improve your memory.
Feature solely written for angelagaffney.com by Margie Keystone