Taking care of your brain is just as important as taking care of any other part of your body, if not even more.
After all, as your body ages and becomes weaker, so does your brain, and mental decline is not an uncommon consequence. Luckily, there are ways to keep your brain sharp for longer. With that in mind, if you want to keep your brain healthy, here are a few suggestions you should consider.
n’t start smoking
And if you already do smoke, quit. Research has shown that smoking increases the chance of dementia and stroke. So, it’s not just a bad habit – it can seriously harm your mental health as you age. Even if you smoke less than half a pack a day, you’re still at considerable risk. The good news is that if you do eventually quit smoking, the risk of dementia and stroke will decrease, and your brain is more likely to function normally during your golden years.
2. Get enough sleep
The brain never shuts off completely, not even as we sleep. There is actually a lot of work going on while sleeping, from regaining energy to processing everything that happened during the day. For example, our dreams are greatly connected to the information we gathered during the day but perhaps haven’t understood fully. This means that “sleeping on it” does actually work, and you can solve issues much more easily after a good night’s sleep.
Consequently, this also means that if you don’t sleep enough, you will lose that ability. Not to mention that being sleep deprived also means that you are never fully conscious and able to perform at your cognitive peak. So, make sure to get at least seven hours of quality sleep every night.
3. Get professional help
Regardless of your age and health condition, brain tumours can still appear. If you notice the symptoms, the most important thing to do is not to panic. It’s completely normal to be scared, but you should still try to stay positive, and get tested first.
You should also talk to a good neurosurgeon, like Dr Timothy Steel, who can help you decide on the next step. There are more than a few treatment options, like surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. However, most patients are usually advised to get a combination of different treatments for better results.
Needless to say, stress can greatly affect your mental abilities. If you’re stressed out, it becomes extremely hard for you to focus, solve problems, make decisions, etc. It is what stress is meant to do though – it’s supposed to make your attention span short, so you can focus only on what’s causing the stress.
However, if you are constantly under stress, it means that you’re never able to think critically. Stress can also affect your sleep and eating habits, which can harm your mental health even more. So, find a way to de-stress, whether it is some form of meditation, a type of exercise, or some other calming activity.
5. Improve your diet
This one probably does not come as a surprise. If you want your brain to stay healthy, you need to eat healthy. There are many different types of food that are good for your brain. For example, Ginkgo biloba can improve your memory while oily fish can improve your brain function. Protein, which is mostly found in meat, eggs, and beans can make you more mentally alert. Vegetables, in general, are great for your mental health, so make sure to eat plenty of them.
Keeping your brain healthy is a must if you want to lead a quality lifestyle in your older years. Many people are afraid of dementia, and even though it’s sometimes unavoidable, you should still do your best to lower your chances of suffering from it.
So, improve your diet, and make sure to get enough sleep. Quit smoking if you do smoke, and don’t start if you don’t. Find a way to relieve stress, and if you do happen to get a brain tumour, make sure to consult an experienced doctor.