Save your brain!

October 16, 2012 at 5:08 pm Leave a comment

As we all continue to age it is important to consider the lifestyle choices we make. The unfortunate reality is that constant unhealthy lifestyle choices lead to diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and brain-related health problems. These diseases are all linked to common health problems (especially in the elderly) such as stroke, dementia, and Alzheimer’s.   

Paul David Nussbaum, PhD and writer for parentgiving.com has outlined five steps for maintaining brain health to its fullest potential! Adoption of these brain-healthy lifestyle tips is a great way to set examples for children and grandchildren, and maybe even encourage an aging loved one to make subtle changes in everyday habits as well.

Socialization- This is the first critical area to think about in order to promote healthy brain lifestyles. Not only does socialization reduce the risk of dementia, it also provides a role and purpose for getting up each morning. Remaining involved in the community and keeping up with family and/or friends is a great beginning step to ensure positive brain aging.Image

Physical Activity- The human brain consumes such a high level of glucose, oxygen, and blood- it is no wonder physical activity is a key role in brain health. We have all heard it before, but do try and get your heart rate up everyday- it is truly the “central” nervous system of our bodies.

Mental Stimulation- It is important to stimulate our brains by putting down the high tech gadgets or devices every once in a while and challenge our brains to do some problem solving!

Spirituality- By making a conscious effort to engage in a slower and more reflective life, we can impact our health and brains in a positive way. Of course we all live busy lifestyles in fast-paced environments, but even taking 15 minutes out of the day could do wonders! Take notice during times where you could use a break and reward yourself with some down time- it will only result in less stress and a healthier brain.Image

Nutrition- Food has the ability to alter thought processes, mood, and behavior. With this being said, it is extremely important to think about what we feed our bodies! The brain is 60 percent fat (the fattest part of the body) and thrives on omega-3 fatty acids (good fat) and antioxidants. Fill your diet with foods such as salmon, whole grains, and fresh fruits and veggies! 

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