How to keep your memory fit as you get older
Without taking appropriate action the avoidable debilitating effects of getting older may catch-up with the inevitable passage of time.We are often preoccupied with the physical decline in our bodies but what is possibly worse is when our mind begins to show signs of failing.Forgetfulness and becoming slower in our thinking can give rise to great upset and a feeling of isolation, even if the cause is not the result of any specific condition such as dementia. There is good news. According to The Harvard Medical School decades of research conclude that certain strategies will help protect and sharpen our brains.With some time and effort put in the brain can be strengthened by certain training just like a muscle, preventing some of age-related cognitive decline so as to keep your brain sharper.
What is not often appreciated is that exercise can help strengthen your brain as well as keep your body strong and healthy.Short-term memory improvement is one of the main benefits noticeable in older people who have started an exercise regime and particularly one involving lots of cardiovascular work.
Regular use of your brain in creative ways can avoid it deteriorating.The saying ‘use it or lose it’ applies here.
Experts at Harvard think that advanced education may help keep memory strong by getting a person into the habit of being mentally active. They say that challenging your brain with mental exercise is believed to activate processes that help maintain individual brain cells and stimulate communication among them. Many people have jobs that keep them mentally active, but pursuing a hobby or learning a new skill can function the same way. Read; join a book group; play chess or bridge; write your life story; do crossword or jigsaw puzzles; take a class; pursue music or art; design a new garden layout.That said though, anything will help – even just reading occasionally.
Although healthy eating lowers your risk of diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease, it’s not yet clear if that’s true for Alzheimer’s disease as well. It’s not a lost cause though. Here are 9 foods that researchers think will keep your whole body, including your brain, healthy.
The right diet can do wonders for looking after your brain and helping to prevent the onset of various neurological diseases or general deterioration. Particularly useful are fatty acids such as omega 3 which you can get from fish and supplements, vitamins such as B9 (also known as folic acid) which can be found in fruits and veg and amino acids (proteins) which you can get from meat or from supplementation – from ‘Age Slower’ by David Jones
Your lifestyle can also impact on your mental health. Your sleep regime and fresh air can affect your brain, and alcohol consumption can also have a big impact.
In Japan, particularly in Okinawa, always keeping busy is seen as giving a sense of purpose in life and supports a concept known as Ikigai. Having something to get up in the morning to do is central to their way of life and is credited with giving the Okinawans a long life expectancy such that they tend to live much longer than those in the rest of the world’s population.What is more they enjoy enviable levels of vitality and health unthinkable for people of advanced age almost any where else in the world.
“One surprising thing you notice,living in Japan, is how active people remain after they retire .In fact, many Japanese people never really retire – they keep doing what they love for as long as their health allows”
– Ikigai – The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life by Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles