We’ve all entered a room and forgot why we were there. You know you went in there for something, but now can’t remember what. You decide to turn around and go back out when suddenly you remember what it was you wanted. Though this momentary lapse in memory is common, you may wonder; can you prevent memory loss?
Fortunately, there are lots of things you can do to help your memory and prevent memory loss. Brain function doesn’t hold the same scientific mysticism it once did and researchers understand cognitive function better than ever. Once upon a time, memory loss and cognitive decline were considered a natural part of aging. Today, we know this is not true and there are at least 10 things you can do to help.
Ways to Prevent Memory Loss
That’s right you java junkies, your daily addiction is good for your brain. Research shows that caffeine has a positive impact on memory. In addition to that, the benefits are most noticeable in individuals over 65. Memory is at its best in the beginning of the day and slowly declines as the day wanes. However, those who drink about two cups of coffee a day don’t suffer from this daily decline.
You know that being active is good for your body, but it’s also good for your brain. So good for your brain, in fact, that aerobic exercise increases the size of the hippocampus. This is the part of the brain associated with memory storage.
Stay Mentally Active
Staying mentally active is a great way to maintain, and even improve, cognitive functions like memory and recall.
Today, many groups are working to put an end to the stigmas around mental health. And depression is a big one. In fact, major depressive disorder is the leading cause of disability for people 15-44. Additionally, depression severely affects memory and recall. Research shows that those with depressive symptoms had worse memory.
Hanging out with friends is a great way to stay mentally active. In fact, talking with a friend for just ten minutes can improve memory.
One of the best things you can do for your memory is to just relax. Researchers have linked the stress hormone, cortisol, to short-term memory loss in seniors. Because of this, practicing calming methods can be good for your mind.
Get Your Z’s
As you sleep, your body heals and recharges. This goes for the brain as well. Particularly, the brain flushes toxins while you sleep which lowers your risk of developing Alzheimer’s. One theory posits that as you sleep, your brain is processing the events of the day and storing them in your memory.
A bad diet doesn’t just add pounds to the scale but also can subtract from your memory. Unhealthy eating habits can impact brain health in a number of ways. These impacts include short-term memory, episodic memory, and long-term memory. Some food to help you retain your memories are:
- Dark chocolate
Being calm can help keep your memory intact, and so practicing mindfulness is also good for your brain. Research has found that meditating for 45 minutes a day can improve test scores in college students.
Watch Less TV
The old adage about TV rotting your brain might actually hold water. Research in older adults shows that those who watch more TV experience increased signs of mental decline. So, watching less TV might actually help you maintain your memory.
Want to learn more scientific tips and tricks about aging well? Here is your FREE A-Z guide on Living and Aging the Way You Want. Click the icon and get your copy today!
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