You have likely heard that your 20s and 30s are the time to start taking proactive action to prevent diseases and illnesses. This is especially the case with the brain. This is the point when the cells start to die but can be protected and repaired relatively easily.
Your brain health will start to take a dip when you get older. The brain cells die, the connections start to diminish, and it is harder for your body to get oxygen throughout your body.
The great news is that in your 30s you can take steps to protect and even improve your brain health. This is not just about preventing illnesses like dementia. You can improve memory and other cognitive functions. Here are seven tips to improve your brain health in your 30s. There is no time like the present to start.
Do Brain Activities in the Gym
The gym is not just for your physical health and strength. You can also use it to help improve your mental health and strength. Studies show that working both the body and the mind at the same time is extremely beneficial for revitalizing and improving your brain cells. Yes, you can boost your brain power by doing brain activities at any time of the day, but they are more effective when you are giving your body a workout.
Try doing a crossword puzzle or Sudoku when you are at the gym. Step onto the stationary bike or a stepper machine and get your brain working at the same time. If you are still studying for a degree, take your notes with you to boost your results.
While you are getting a brain workout, you will also take the mind off the exercise you are doing. It is much easier to get a fuller workout because you are not constantly clockwatching to stop the exercise. You start to enjoy everything you do more, so you get more of the happy hormones released around your body.
If you are looking at improving your fitness levels at home, you can look for other ways to incorporate brain exercises. The Nintendo Wii Fit has a brain training game. You must move around to hit numbers with your hip while doing math puzzles. It is fun, competitive, and an all-over workout.
And you do not have to let other people know you are training your brain at the same time. If you do not like the stationary bike and want to do some weight exercises, put some language training on your MP3 player. Learning a new language will boost the brain, too!
Still not sure about this? You could do the crossword puzzle after your workout. Just watching out for the sugar drinks while you do them as they will negate the workout.
Increase Your Brain Food Intake
There are so many foods that are good for the brain. You likely know all about oily fish. There have been studies for years that show eating more tuna, salmon, and other similar fish is good for your brain. It is all linked to the omega-3 fatty acids, which are available in many ingredients. You can also add more avocados, asparagus, and walnuts for your omega-3s. Some yogurts also have it added to them!
Omega-3 fatty acids are excellent for improving the brain health. They help to reduce inflammation within the body, which helps to protect the development of cells and the nerves. You will see less memory loss and lower the risk of Alzheimer’s and other dementias. There are also studies that this lack of inflammation can reduce the risk of depression.
But it is not just omega-3s that you want to include in your diet. There are antioxidants and spices that you need. Start adding more blueberries, curry spices, rosemary, and even tomato sauce to your diet.
You can get some benefits from cocoa, coffee, and red wine. However, too much and you will negate the positives. Just a glass of red wine, a cup of coffee, or two small squares of chocolate are good enough for your brain health.
Learn Something New Daily
There is a popular saying that “you learn something new every day.” This is not just good for improving your debating abilities and expanding your views. Learning something new every day will also help to improve your brain health. You want to increase your knowledge and experiences.
What do you do on your day off work? Many people tend to read books or watch TV. While you want to spend your time doing something you love, find a way to keep your brain active. Look at things you can learn while you are off work. Take up sewin
g or knitting glasses, create jewelry, learn a new skill on the computer, or even start a woodwork project.
Finding a new passion will do more than just teach you something. You can reduce the chance of depression and anxiety. It is possible to increase the happy hormones in the body. Many people have also taken their new skills and started making money from them, helping them increase their finances to get them off the poverty line.
Not sure what you should learn? There is no wrong or right answer to this. Do something that seems like fun to you. If you find that it is not that fun, after all, there is nothing wrong with stopping and trying something else.
Your hobbies do not need to become something financially rewarding. The trick is for them to be personally rewarding. Doing jigsaws is a way for many people to relax. The best thing about them is you can break them up and do them all over again in the future!
Incorporate All Your Senses
While you want to improve your brain, the eyes are not the only way to do that. You do not just have to read to be able to improve knowledge and increase learning. The brain gets information for all five senses. If one of your senses has gone, the other four senses will improve in strength. Yes, blind people really do tend to have better hearing or better taste or smell sensors.
Incorporate all the senses that you have available to you. Learn through touch and smell. Use your hearing to learn something new, such as through audiobooks and podcasts. Work with the sense of taste to figure out flavors in recipes and secret ingredients.
The different senses will also help to improve memory. Often sounds and scents will jog memories of past events. You can think of a holiday when you were a teenager or a friend you used to know. Our memory through sight can waver, but that is not quite the case with the other senses. Sometimes you will get a feeling of déjà vu, but eventually, your memory starts to develop in a stronger and surer way.
Meditate to Reduce the Stress
Your 30s can be a stressful time. For many people, this is a time to have careers, families, and friends. Your social calendar can be packed, especially when your kids start taking up activities and hobbies. You end up not knowing what day of the week it is.
And then there are the stresses at work or financial stresses to concentrate on. Stress is one of the worst things for your whole body. This is not just about increasing your blood pressure. Stress affects the inflammatory response and can lead to more cells dying. Your brain is not supported, so your cognitive functions are negatively affected.
Managing your stress levels is essential. One of the best ways to do that is to meditate. You can learn to focus on some of the positives of the day, calm your center, and release the positive hormones around your body. This is also an excellent way to get some quality time for yourself. It is all about focusing on you personally, rather than everyone else in your life.
Meditating can also be mixed with yoga practices. You get the physical benefits of exercise while reducing the stressful feelings in your body. This can also help you feel like you are doing something, and you get the support from your yoga instructor to help you improve your abilities.
Learn How to Block Out the Noise
During the day, you will need to find other ways to reduce the stress. When you get stressed, you spend a lot of mental energy on useless tasks and actions. You worry about things you have no control over and panic about situations that you cannot do anything about. When you can do something about problems, you spend more time focusing on the issues rather than the actual solutions that will help you.
This wasted mental energy just causes a decline in the cognitive functions. You release more stress hormones and find it harder to keep inflammation to a minimum. You are more likely to suffer from anxiety and depression, and your stress can spiral out of control.
It is time to look at blocking out the noise. Block out anything that is not going to help you solve a problem. Learn how not to become distracted by the things around you and find ways to keep your mind calm and completive.
There are many tips to help. Deep breathing is one of the best options. As you find your mind racing and distractions from all sides, take 5-10 deep breaths and center your mind better. You will find it is like mini meditation sessions. The breaths will pull your mind back to the situation and the boost of oxygen will improve your cognitive connections.
You will also want to block out the actual distractions from your work. They just lead to stress as you get behind. Whether it is music or meditation, do what works for you.
Stop Forcing Yourself to Remember Everything
We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to remember meaningless details. Like who the actor was on your favorite TV show the night before and where you would hear a quote from in the past. Inconsequential things do not need to be remembered. Your brain has forgotten because they have no weighing in your life.
Then there are events that you forget because there are other ways to remember. Rather than trying to memorize your best friend’s cell phone number, just store it on your own phone. Use an address book to keep track of numbers, addresses, emails, and more.
Trying to put too much in your memory bank is harming your brain. Think of your brain like a computer hard drive or cell phone storage. After a while, your space gets filled. You need to delete something to be able to store something new. That means you lose that item you have deleted, never to get it back.
Of course, with a computer, you can transfer items to another form of storage. That is what you can do for your brain. When it gets packed, instead of losing everything you can write it down. There are diaries, online calendars, phone memos, and so much more. Use them to your advantage to keep the meaningless information in your brain to a minimum.
Boost Your Brain Power Today
It is time to boost your brain power. Your 30s is the best time to do it. Not only will you help to prevent later illnesses, but you can also improve your whole outlook on life. With better cognitive functions, your body can release all the right hormones. This will help to further improve your overall and your brain health.
Do not worry about remembering what you ate for dinner last night. If you really need to remember this detail, write it down and allow your brain to forget about it. Your spouse’s birthday can be written in a calendar. That way your brain is full of the information you need for work or for the tasks you are doing.
Learn something new daily and get some alone time. You want to protect your brain for the long term. It is the only one you get, and it affects your whole body. Improve the blood and oxygen flow now and you will have a mind that remains sharp as you get older.