As you age, you may notice changes in your memory and thinking. You might start misplacing things or find it hard to remember simple things like where you parked your car. When people age, their brains shrink, and blood flow becomes slow.
However, there are ways to slow these symptoms down. Here’s how you can stay sharp during your senior years:
1. Read Frequently
Just like you exercise your body, your brain also requires some exercise. Reading is a great way to do this. When your mind is inactive, you can lose your cognitive skills faster than necessary.
Although reading can be a task, there are some fun ways to help you turn it into a habit. Try the following tips to make reading a more enjoyable practice:
- Schedule a time every day for reading;
- Join a book club through your local library, church, or bookstore;
- Subscribe to your favorite magazine or newspaper;
- Read only your favorite books;
- Read to your grandchildren;
Reading is believed to build cognitive reserve, enabling you to continue performing cognitive tasks with ease. With the necessary helpful hints, you’ll be able to age gracefully.
2. Make Writing a Habit
You can write about anything and everything. It doesn’t matter what you write about because simply expressing yourself will go a long way in boosting your brain activity. Writing works to improve your communication abilities as well as working memory. Here’s a list of some of the fun things you can write:
- Song lyrics
- Blog posts
- Christmas cards
- Creative stories
- Letters to loved ones
- Your to-do list for the day
According to the Alzheimer Association, your brain health relies heavily on mental stimulation. Writing is a perfect way to stimulate your brain.
3. Exercise Regularly
Exercise doesn’t only benefit the body, but the mind too. Your mind and body are interconnected, and as a result, the mind benefits from what helps the body. When you stay physically active, regular blood flow to the brain is maintained, reducing the risk of high blood pressure. Most high blood pressure patients tend to develop dementia.
The following are some physical activities you can add to your routine to improve blood flow to your brain:
- Playing a sport of your choice
- Walking your pet
- Water aerobics
- Nature walks or hiking
You can do this with your fellow seniors in the community to make it fun. It will turn your senior get-togethers into positive and fun experiences.
4. Eat Healthily
You’ll be surprised how much reducing your sugar intake will help stimulate your mind. Along with sugar, you should also try to avoid saturated and trans fats as well as hydrogenated oils.
However, studies have shown that you can significantly reduce your risk of cognitive decline by eating lots of vegetables and fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids like salmon and tuna.
The following are foods you can include in your diet for an extra brain boost and why:
Tea and coffee
Tea and coffee can improve your alertness and focus. It is because they’re both rich in polyphenols and antioxidants. Also, caffeine can help solidify new memories.
Berries contain antioxidants and flavonoids, which can help delay memory decline.
Walnuts can reduce high blood pressure and clean your arteries. They can also help improve your memory because they’re high in healthy fats and proteins.
Nuts and red wine can also improve your cognitive skills. Remember, too much of anything can be harmful so try to take everything in the recommended quantities or moderation.
5. Keep a Good Posture
Maintaining an upright posture is very important. It helps improve circulation and blood flow to the brain. As you age, blood flow to your brain somehow slows down. However, it’s certainly harder to keep an upright posture in your senior years and the urge to lie down all the time is very strong.
You can ask your caregivers or family to put supportive pillows or cushions in your seat or couch to make it easier and more comfortable for you to sit up straight.
6. Socialize More
In previous studies, significantly low social engagement has been linked to high risks of dementia.
Making time to socialize with friends and family is good for your brain. You can make it even more fun and mentally stimulating by playing puzzle games.
Misplacing things and forgetting what you wanted to say can become the norm during senior years. However, you can significantly reduce the pace at which your cognitive memory declines.
Use this insightful guide to give your brains the boost they need.