The brain is one of the most essential organs of our body. The way we choose to live our lives influences the brain’s health as we age. These so-called lifestyle habits can be divided into four categories: physical health and exercise, diet and nutrition, cognitive activity, and social engagement, all of which are influencing our brain one way or another. The way we manage each one of them can ensure a healthy brain and reduce the risk of cognitive decline. The studies show that a balance between good nutrition and mental, social and physical activities can help with maintaining and even improving brain health than a single activity could.
In order to maintain and improve brain health, first you must feed your brain properly. If you are already maintaining a healthy diet in order to avoid bad fats and high cholesterol, it means you already made the first step to a healthier brain. Recent studies have shown that a diet with low saturated fats and cholesterol, that is rich in good fats such as polyunsaturated omega-3 nutrients (such as vitamin E and lutein), can protect brain cells and promote brain health. As you can see, in order to ensure a healthy diet for the brain, you need to replace the saturated and trans fats with healthier fats such as the ones found in olive oil or fatty fish. You need to maximize your intake of DHA, which is an omega-3 fatty acid essential for the brain. Add products containing vitamin E which is essential for brain health. It can be found in various products such as milk, butter, eggs, nuts, etc. Lutein is an important antioxidant found in various vegetables that helps you maintain healthy eyes and supports brain health.
An important aspect of brain health is your overall physical health, the two being linked. Exercising can in improve health in many ways – by helping maintain a healthy weight and keeping the cholesterol in check or maintaining a good blood flow to the body and brain, this way encouraging the growth of new brain cells and connection. This is why it is important to make time for at least 30 minutes of physical exercises every day. This way you also ensure a healthy weight, minimizing the risk of diabetes, high cholesterol and other complications. Sleep is also important, that’s why you need to make sure you sleep at least 7-8 hours each day. Routine visits to your doctor are useful to keep your body healthy.
The final step in ensuring a better functioning of your brain is staying mentally and socially active. In order for your brain to work better, it needs to be challenged more and this can be easily accomplished by adopting certain hobbies and playing various games that stimulate your brain. Formal education is another way of stimulating the brain, therefore you need to make sure you get as much formal education during your lifetime. As for social engagement, studies have shown that regular social activities promote creation of new brain cells and support brain repair. This is why interaction with other people is helpful to us. In order to ensure it, you should take in consideration volunteering for a cause meaningful to you, making friends and family a priority and spend time with them regularly or even join clubs.
In conclusion, there is a lot to take into consideration when it comes to improving your brain’s health and you should start taking action today.