No matter how quick and we are today, with age comes certain fear. Who wants to lose* their mental sharpness? If you want to have to gear up for a battle. Face a battle with time and its cruel effects on our bodies and minds.
Alzheimer’s and dementia take your mind, memories, relationships and connections. What horrible thing, to have you taken away from you! Think of your brain health as your other type of life insurance, the one for your life upstairs.
The Alzheimer’s Association recommends a combination of Vitamins E, C and B12 as well as Foliate. Fruits and veggies are the go-to for heath, but the best of the best when it comes to your brain? Think darker, the better: kale, spinach, eggplant, blueberries, etc.
They also promote fish as the best meat for you brain: salmon, trout halibut, and tuna. Nuts are also great brain-boosters, as are avocados and whole grains.
There are foods that are very bad for your brain, in order least to most dangerous; health are: sugary foods, soda, alcohol, simple carbohydrates (any type of bread that isn’t whole wheat), fried food, over-processed food, artificial sweeteners, trans fats and nicotine.
Much easier said than done, but there are simple things you can do to try and cut needless stress or add stress-relieving activities. Examples are: Meditation, yoga, deep breathing, chess, golf, massage.
Also important for both stress reduction* and brain health (also according to the Alzheimer’s Association), is to maintain a fun social life that you enjoy.
According to the American Depression Association of America, the recommended minimal amount of exercise needed is five times a week for at least 30 minutes. But you don’t have to look at it like punching a clock; when your goal of exercise is stress reduction*, you’re supposed to have fun!
Try out a few different offered classes at the gym, and see which ones you like. Just think in terms of what feels good to you, and then gradually increase* it as you feel comfortable. Your physical health will benefit too.
This can be done in all sorts of fun ways. Board games, watching Jeopardy, and challenging yourself or someone else to see who can get the most right, crossword puzzles or jumbles in the paper, doing a jigsaw puzzle.
Memory exercises have been shown in studies to be especially beneficial to the brain long-term. There are several websites that offer these for free. Try putting together a trivia contest for friends and family members.
- Challenge Your Brain: Crossword, trivia, jigsaw puzzle
- Focus on your thoughts: Set a timer for two minutes, and for minutes you will only focus your thoughts on something positive. A happy memory, a favorite sports team or food, whatever you’d like. Nothing but that one thing for two minutes. If you succeed, move the timer up for more time. If you don’t do so well? Try again with a lower time.
- Get Plenty of Sleep: At least 7 hours, preferably 8 because it the physiology of sleep.
- Drink plenty of water: If you’re a newbie with healthy water intake, start off slow and make it easy on yourself. Start off with 6oz and see if you can gradually get up to the full, recommended 8oz per day.
- Be Social: Do at least two social things per week: one with friends and one with your spouse. Tuesday night you play cards with the guys, then Friday its date night. Or bring all the couple friends together to do something fun. A dinner party, a play, the movies, maybe even bowling?
- Eliminate* Bad Habits: Start with one at a time, and work out a plan of action. Chances are you won’t be wildly successful the first go at it, but don’t let it bother you too much. The point is that you keep trying to break the habit.
- Limit Alcohol: A lot of people tend to drink more alcohol when they’re home just like they eat more when they’re at home. It’s too comfortable, and it’s right there. And they’re already paid for it, so, why not? A decision to only drink alcohol when you’re out of the house might be a good solution.
- Set Your Goals and Try Achieving Them: Try one small and one big. Goal One is to finally change that annoying light bulb in the garage and Goal Two is to learn German, something like that.
- Learn Something New: If you can’t think of something, flip open a catalog from the local community college and that should inspire you a bit.
- Dance Tango: Good for exercise, the social life, and romance! Can’t hurt!
Brain Health Tips for Elderly People
- Eat smorgasbord
- Have lots of fish
- Watch and maintain healthy weight
- Avoid dehydrating yourself
- Be active
Medicine can fix or replace many things on our bodies, but our brains are highly customized and irreversible. Taking care of them is our responsibly and can be fun too.