Your brain is the most important part of your body. Unfortunately, as you get older, cognitive decline is something that’s common. You can actually prevent cognitive decline and diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease by taking proper care of your brain. Brain exercises paired with a healthy diet and supplements can help keep your brain as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
Why Is It Important to Take Care of the Brain?
Recent research has found that by taking care of our brain, we can greatly lower the risk of Alzheimer’s, stroke, or other forms of dementia. In fact, doctors believe that it’s possible to improve brain health, reducing the risk of dementia and age-related cognitive decline, simply by making lifestyle changes. On top of preventing disease, taking care of our brain will also help us stay sharp the older we get. Your whole life your brain works to control your body’s functions and helps you understand and interact with the world around you. So naturally, the healthier it is, the more focused you will be.
Do Brain Exercises Really Work?
In recent years, brain health exercises have become increasingly popular as researchers have found that it’s possible to ‘work-out’ your brain. Because of this, and technological advancements, app developers have rushed to create brain exercise for those searching how to improve brain function. Many of these games promise that they will help improve cognitive function and increase your brainpower.
The game’s target skills like working memory and attention, and they get more difficult as you get better at them. However, recent studies have found that these claims may be bogus. Studies claim that such brain-training programs had no discernible effect on the brain, on cognitive performance, or anything else. Most researchers suggest that there are better exercises for you to practice.
Which Exercise is Best for the Brain?
If you’re trying to live a longer, healthier life, exercise is a crucial part of the formula. The benefits of regular exercise extend beyond just your physical health and wellbeing. Working out has a very positive effect on our brains. Here are some healthy brain exercises that you need to be practicing:
- Aerobic Exercise - Endurance exercises such as running, swimming, or biking do more than improving heart health. These exercises can foster new brain cell growth and preserve existing brain cells
- Strength Training - Lifting weights or using a resistance band can improve mood, boost brain-power, enhance concentration, and increase decision-making skills
- Stretching - Better flexibility means better posture, which reduces the risk of injury
- Balance exercises - The older you get, the more and more your balance diminishes. Balance training can help you avoid falls and improve your overall health
As you can see, these exercises will not only help you increase your physical health. They will also help you increase your brain health.
What Are the Healthiest Exercises?
Not all brain exercises are created equal. Experts recommend that you get 30-60 minutes a day of exercise. The more active you are, generally, the more healthy you are. However, it should be noted that it is possible to overwork yourself which can be damaging. Here are some recommended exercises:
- Interval training
- Brain exercise yoga
- Finger exercises for brain
Overworking your body can stress out both your body and your brain. Be sure to keep track of how your body is feeling whenever you’re working out. If you are incredibly sore, it may be best that you take a day or two off. While it’s important to exercise, it’s even more important to not overwork your body, which can diminish all of your results.
What Games Exercise Your Brain?
As we mentioned earlier, brain exercise games may not immediately turn you into the next Einstein. However, brain exercises can help prevent Alzheimer’s by keeping the neural connections in your brain strong. These games challenge your working memory and mental agility. By keeping your brain active, you can fight off brain diseases that are common as you get older. Here are some recommended games:
- Fit Brains Trainer
- Brain Fitness
- Brain Trainer
- Brain Metrix
Most of these games can be found on the app store on your phone. Some of these apps require either a one-time purchase or a subscription to use. Most have a free trial so you can see if the games work for you.
How to Keep Brain Healthy and Sharp
There’s more than you can do to keep your brain healthy and sharp than brain sharpening exercises. Some of the ways you can keep your brain healthy can be achieved by making small lifestyle changes. Maintaining proper brain health requires a long-term commitment. Here are some of the things you can do to keep your brain healthy:
- Don’t stop learning - Researchers believe that further learning can help keep memory strong by getting a person into the habit of being mentally active. You can achieve this by reading a book, playing cards, playing chess, and writing
- Use your senses - The more you use your senses throughout the day the more your brain will be involved. When learning something, use all the senses possible. This will make it easier for the brain to remember things
- Positive self-think - Studies have actually found that older learners do worse on memory tasks when they have been exposed to aging and memory stereotypes
- Work smarter - If you don’t have to exert brain-power trying to remember when your doctor’s appointment is or where your keys are, you will have more brain-power to focus on other things. Use calendars and create a designated area where your keys go, so on and so forth
- Repeat things - If you really want to remember something you read or something somebody told you, write it down and say it out loud. Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification if you need the information to be repeated
- Space things out - While repeating something can help you remember it easier, it’s important that you don’t overdo it. Spacing out periods of study is valuable when you’re trying to remember complicated information
- Use mnemonics - Mnemonics are a great way to engrave something into your brain. It’s part of the reason why companies try to make catchy acronyms when marketing products
These exercises to improve memory and concentration are centered around keeping your brain active. Pairing these exercises with other healthy lifestyle choices can help you keep your brain as healthy as possible
Supplements that can Help
On top of a healthy diet, supplements can help improve your brain’s health. This is because there are plenty of nutrients that are recommended that the average American fails to get in their regular diet. An example is spermidine, which can help induce a bodily function known as autophagy.
This process is the body’s way of replacing old, potential damaged cells with newer, healthier cells. These older cells can lead to oxidative stress around the brain, which is a big contributing factor when it comes to cognitive decline. By taking spermidine supplements, you can be sure you’re doing what you can to induce autophagy throughout your body.
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