Your brain is the most complex organ of your body. It is composed of the cerebral cortex and the cerebellum which contain neurons and glial cells. Glial cells serve as structural and metabolic support, insulation, and development, and neurons send signals to cells all over your body. Your brain is involved in memory, perception, learning, motivation, motor control, sleep, and homeostasis. Read on to learn some helpful tips to keep your brain healthy.
The first tip to keep your brain healthy is to supplement. There are many supplements you can use to help your body and your workouts. Of course, vitamins and minerals provide excellent benefits and keep you in good health. For example, these help you fight free radicals, maintain stronger bones, well-functioning body systems and energize you.
At the same time, your brain can also benefit from brain supplements. Unique formulas from the likes of Unlocked Supplement Co. are known as nootropics. Brain boosting formulas are similar to vitamins and minerals but work differently from them. These formulas boost brain health, memory, creativity, and help you fight stress.
If you exercise regularly, you are already helping keep your brain healthy. Working out your muscles and engaging in quick movements help your brain to release serotonin, just like sunshine. Serotonin is the brain’s feel-good chemical that gives you feelings of wellbeing, helps you sleep well, and keeps you energized. Serotonin, also, gives you a satisfying feeling when you accomplish something, like finishing a project.
In addition to serotonin production, exercise also helps to improve hormonal balance and lower cortisol. This is great for brain health since too much cortisol increases inflammation, depression, anxiety, and self-doubt, and contributes to weight gain, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, skin changes, and muscle weakness.
A Diversified Clean Diet
Another tip to keep your brain healthy is to have a healthy diet with diverse clean (non-toxic, organic) foods. Just like your body benefits from certain foods, your brain can use diverse foods for its advantage. Antioxidant-rich greens and berries, motivational and energizing caffeinated drinks, and good fats are prime examples.
Here are foods that positively influence your brain:
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Maintain cell structure, improve memory, and lower blood levels of beta-amyloid ( protein found in people with Alzheimer’s disease). Fatty fish is a great source to be eaten at least twice a week. Yet, consume varieties low in mercury (salmon, cod, canned light tuna, pollack, anchovies). If you don’t eat fish, consume flaxseeds, avocados, and walnuts.
- Dark Chocolate: contains cannabinoids, flavanols, stimulants, and minerals essential for serotonin production, blood flow, and brain function.
- Berries: Anthocyanins and flavonoids found in berries help improve memory and prevent age-related memory loss.
- Fresh Spices & Herbs (Turmeric, cinnamon, sage, peppermint, gingko biloba, saffron, thyme, rosemary, chamomile): Improve blood flow to the brain, alertness, DHA, memory, and lower cortisol and anxiety.
- Leafy Greens (kale, spinach, collards, broccoli): Rich in vitamin K, lutein, folate, and beta carotene that help reduce age-related cognitive problems.
- Caffeine (tea and coffee): It helps to boost short-term concentration, memory, and mental functioning.
If you have a restrictive diet, as with a vegan or vegetarian diet, you should consume vegan-friendly supplements to substitute the omega-3s from fish.
Although it is well-established that your brain isn’t a muscle, you should work your brain as well as your body for vitality and health. Regular brain workouts such as crosswords, memory games, logic puzzles, Sudoku are excellent for helping keep your brain active.
Simultaneously, anything needing concentration can be considered a brain workout. For example, dancing, learning, or teaching/learning a skill, as well as actively listening to music or others engages both hemispheres of the brain. On the other hand, logic and creativity work alone, so using both sides of your brain in this way promotes increased neuron activity for better brain health.
Another important tip for keeping your brain healthy is getting a good night’s sleep. Whether you exercise a lot or not, you are probably aware of how crucial a good night’s sleep can be. But even in a world highly aware of the importance of sleep, 62% of adults still don’t get enough proper sleep.
A new bed and mattress can be expensive, but these are tools you should have set in place to have a restful night. Additionally, don’t let your bedroom become too hot during the night, or you will be restless. Further, make your sleep area as quiet and dark as possible which helps your circadian rhythm – necessary to achieve REM sleep and normal functioning during the day.
Following the above tips will help to keep your brain healthy. Supplementing, exercising regularly, having a healthy diet, working out your brain, and sleeping properly can boost your brainpower to keep you sharp and healthy overall.
To a Fitter Healthier You,
The Fitness Wellness Mentor