Keeping your brain healthy is vital if you want to be on top form, and it can also help to stave off illnesses that cause cognitive declines, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s. There are a variety of easy ways how you can boost your brain’s health daily. From doing cryptic crosswords to getting a full night’s sleep, your brain will benefit if you incorporate the following simple steps into your daily routine.
A good night’s sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep is vital to support your brain’s ability to function at its optimal level. When you fall asleep, it allows your body reenergizes, your cells repair, and your brain sorts through what it has learned that day. Sleep also helps to support learning and memory. The average adult needs around eight hours sleep per night. If you have trouble falling asleep, then try turning off all screens at least an hour before bedtime, as the light from screens such as smartphones and iPads can inhibit the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone. Put on relaxing music and incorporate aromatherapy into your night-time ritual by spraying a relaxing scent, such as lavender, on to your pillow to help you sleep well and give your brain a chance to catch up.
If you have been over-indulging in stimulants, such as alcohol, illegal substances or prescription drugs, they will have affected your brain. Addictive substances rewire your brain’s reward pathway, hitting an intense pleasure followed by a low or withdrawal, and the need for a bigger hit next time as your brain adapts to become less responsive to the same dose. There may be long-lasting effects to your brain if you regularly take drugs, but getting treatment, such as attending a rehab center in Los Angeles, can stop any further damage and help to repair changes to neuron connections in your brain.
Focus on nutrition
What you put into your body will have a profound effect on its health, both physically and mentally. Focus on good nutrition to give your brain a boost. Add superfoods to your daily diet for a healthier brain. Blueberries may improve your learning capacity, while nuts and seeds are not only a good source of protein, but they also boost your vitamin E intake which has been linked with lower rates of cognitive decline as you grow older. Regularly eating oily fish that is rich in Omega 3, such as wild salmon or herring, can improve your brain function. For a delicious sweet treat eat a small amount of dark chocolate each day, ideally 70% cocoa. Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants and contains moderate amounts of caffeine, to boost your concentration and focus, as well as releasing feel-good chemicals in your brain.
Do the crossword each day
Doing the crossword puzzle is not simply a way to pass the time, regularly undertaking it can keep your brain healthy by making it work hard. Crosswords can improve the speed at which your brain works, as well as reducing the risk of dementia and slowing down cognitive decline.