4 Simple Secrets To Brain Health


brain health

1. Relax

Stress can have physical effects on your brain — impairing your ability to learn and remember. When stress hormones flood your brain over a prolonged time, parts of your brain, such as the hippocampus, can actually shrink. We all have stressors, but it’s how you handle stress that’s key to a sound mind.

Don’t view stress as a problem — but as a challenge. A skier on a mountaintop may interpret her pounding heart, fast breathing, and sweaty palms as fear or excitement. Every stressful situation creates physiological symptoms — but you can decide how to play it.

Approach relaxation as a task. Like anything else on your to-do list, you have to set aside time for relaxation — or it won’t happen. Commit to a time and place for your “play date” — and then ease up! It’s time to have fun.

One person’s relaxation is another person’s poison. Some people need a walk alone in the park, but that might drive you crazy. You might want to spend a half-hour with your kids or playing fetch with your dog. It’s your time — you decide.

Beware of “stressing” relaxation. That time unwinding while watching TV? It might actually be stressing you out — raising your blood pressure, frazzling your nerves, and making your heart beat faster. Try to find a relaxing activity that physically calms your mind and body.

Mindful moments can save your day. A 10-minute meditation in the morning can reap rewards throughout your day. Studies show that meditation can increase gamma rays in your brain and increase positive emotions, empathy, and the ability to help others.

2. Sleep

We all know that we should sleep more, but we don’t always know why. A good night’s sleep helps regenerate neurons within the cerebral cortex and form new memories, and it improves verbal acuity. But how do you ensure a good night’s sleep?

brain health

Create a sleep routine. Children wake up and go to bed at a certain hour, and adults should follow a regimen, too. The body will regulate itself even if life goes haywire. Start winding down an hour before bedtime, just like kids do.

Keep a restful sleep environment. Experts warn against working from your bedroom, watching TV, or even using your computer or phone there. Make your sleep area a haven from the rest of the world, so that when you enter — your mind and body will relax.

Limit toxins. Avoid alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine, especially a few hours before bedtime. Although many think alcohol helps them sleep, it actually just knocks them out, causing them to have a restless time throughout the night.

Eat right for sleep. Eat your largest meal at lunch, with a light meal for dinner. Avoid eating before you go to sleep.

Think right for sleep. Studies show that what you think about before you go to bed can affect your sleep and dream state. If you spend a few minutes thinking about things you are grateful for, you will have better dreams and be happier in the morning.

Tags: Best Of 2021

You May Also Like

Catch A (Brain) Wave
Is Mitochondria The Key That Unlocks Brain Health?

Sponsored Link

About Us

A magazine dedicated to the brain.

We believe that neuroscience is the next great scientific frontier, and that advances in understanding the nature of the brain, consciousness, behavior, and health will transform human life in this century.

Education and Training

Newsletter Signup

Subscribe to our newsletter below and never miss the news.

Stay Connected