As promised in my last article, I am back again with some more brain healthy workouts. But first thing first, which means it’s time to laugh.
What does a brain do when it sees a friend across the street?
It gives a brain wave ?
Well I hope you had a good laugh or at least a smile because laughter is the best medicine for good health and brain.
Below are some of the tips to boost our memory and cognitive functioning.
- Socialization: It isn’t said without any reason that man is a social animal. Besides air, food and water humans also need to interact with others to stay healthy. We as people crave interactions, not only when we are young but also as we age and progress through our life. When we socialize with other people multiple areas of our brain are at work i.e medial prefrontal cortex and posterior superior temporal sulcus. Interacting and participating in social activities are exercises for our brain. Through socialization we learn to speak, express and understand emotions while watching others, it keeps our mind sharp and improves our cognitive function. Studies have shown that people who connect with others perform better on memory tests and other cognitive skills. A 2019 study suggests that people who are socially active are at lower risk of developing dementia and Alzeihmer’s Disease.
- Using Your Non-Dominant Hand: This activity is an interesting one and I think many among us must have experienced doing it at least once. Neurobiologist Lawrence Katz in his book Keep Your Brain Alive: 83 Neurobic Exercises to Help Prevent Memory Loss and Increase Mental Fitness, recommends using your non-dominant hand for boosting mental function.Try using your non-dominant hand while brushing your teeth, writing something or eating. This activity is going to challenge our brain by making both our hemispheres active which may result in thinking differently and creatively.
- Draw a map from memory: It’s been long known that drawing something helps you remember it longer. A recent study has found that when we draw, we force our brain to process information in multiple ways i.e visually, kinesthetically and semantically. It’s an important way to boost our memory. So next time when you return from somewhere, sit down and try to recall and draw the map of that place. This is a simple and very effective way to improve our cognitive functioning.
- Puzzles: As it is said “Use it or lose it”. Challenging our brain daily with new activities will help in creating new neural connections and will keep our brain sharp. Invest your time in crossword, Sudoku, jigsaw puzzles or other such types of games. Keeping the brain engaged and active will help generate more cells. Studies have shown that solving puzzles improves visuospatial functioning.
- Try taking a new route: Next time you go somewhere like a grocery store, your office, playground etc try and take a new route. Our brains go on autopilot mode when we keep doing the same thing over and over again. This activity is part of neurobics exercise.
Taking a different route will stimulate our brain. It will activate its problem solving skills, making it focus on new stimuli, resulting in making new connections. And we don’t have to worry about getting lost because we can always turn back to the technology in case we feel lost ?
So now is the time that we start making these changes and enjoy a happy healthy brain as we age. As I say it is the small changes that make big differences in the quality of your life.
- “Memory Matters: Optimize Brain Health & Wellness.” Memory Matters: Optimize Brain Health & Wellness.
- “FAQ – Alzheimer’s & Dementia Resource Center.” FAQ – Alzheimer’s and Dementia.