The human brain is a complex organ. It is responsible for controlling thousands of bodily functions and senses, including memory, speech, thoughts, emotions, movement of legs and arms, and body temperature, among many others. However, the aging process can take a toll on your mental health, resulting in slower response times, a memory decline, and an increased risk of dementia, among several other conditions. Taking proper care of your mental health can also help slow down the aging effects, allowing you to have a sharper and more responsive brain even into your old age. Here are a few simple ways to maintaining a healthy brain.
Get Regular Exercise
Brain cells need a constant supply of oxygen and essential nutrients to stay healthy. This means blood flow to and from the gray matter is critical for keeping these cells healthy. While you may know this already, physical exercise triggers increased blood flow to the various parts and organs of the body. The increased blood flow to the brain thus replenishes the cells with nutrients and especially oxygen, a reason for the improved alertness after hitting the gym or jogging. Among the numerous advantages of increased blood flow to the brain, your brain cells will be healthier, reducing the risk of a decline in mental functions and memory-related conditions.
Stick To A Mediterranean Diet Plan
A Mediterranean diet is mainly comprised of whole grains, plant-based foods, fish, and healthy fats with less salt and red meat. This diet plan, according to research, favors brain development and health. These foods provide the body, and especially the brain, with vital nutrients needed for healthy cells. They are particularly rich in omega fatty acids; compounds believed to help slow cognitive decline and boost mental focus, especially in older adults. Talk to your doctor or dietician for help identifying the best foods to incorporate into your diet plan.
Get Enough Rest/Sleep
Sleep is one of the essential things for improved mental health. Most of the memories we make during the day are consolidated when/while we sleep, making it easier to retrieve them at a later date. Many of the harmful compounds and proteins that might have found their way into the brain cells are also only expunged while we rest. That said, you are better off getting the recommended 8 hours of good quality sleep every day. Getting enough sleep allows you to wake up feeling rejuvenated, happier, and energized, a reason to look forward to the day’s events
Take On Mental Challenges
The brain is a muscle. Mental exercises are thus crucial to keeping these muscles well-toned and healthy. This doesn’t, however, mean you need to go to the gym but instead take on puzzles to challenge the brain. Crossword puzzles, jigsaw puzzles, sudoku, reading, and even playing cards are some of the best exercises for your brain. Exercising your brain muscles helps unlock capabilities you never thought possible.
A good mental workout, proper nutrition, and enough sleep are vital for improved mental health. Paying particular attention to what you eat and leading an active lifestyle are some of the best ways to care for your mental health. Try these today.