How To Support Brain Health

Your brain is truly the most amazing organ of your body - it comes up with creative ways to express your thoughts and emotions, coordinates movements from chopping onions to running an obstacle course, stores your most precious childhood memories, and solves the Sunday crossword. But it's easy to take those powers for granted. Here are some easy breezy practical ways to promote brain health:

Get Sufficient Sleep: Adults need (on average) 6-8 hours of sleep every night and research demonstrates that it's not just for physical rest and mental rejuvenation. Studies show that while people sleep, the brain shrinks temporarily, to allow for clearing of waste substances such as 𝛽-amyloid, a protein that has been linked with Alzheimer’s.

Think of inactivity as a disease: There is an undeniable link between exercise and brain health. Keep up any exercise, movement, or activity that you enjoy ensuring that you will do it regularly. 

Learn how to deal with stress: Like it or not, stress is a part of life. Practice good coping skills: de-stressing exercises, take a nature walk, play with your pet, try journaling, or consume adaptogens. Also, remember to smile and see the humor in life. Research shows that laughter can boost your immune system, ease pain, relax your body and reduce stress. 

Digital detox: Commit to the same bedtime each night and turn off all electronics and screens at least 30-60 minutes before you hit the pillow. Try a complete digital detox for a day or two once a month or quarter.

Exercise your brain: Your brain is the most important organ in your body and needs to be exercised and challenged to stay fit! We commonly think of crossword puzzles and Sudoku, or take the time to learn a new language, a new hobby, or arts and crafts projects.

Get help when you need it: Seeking help is a sign of strength, not a weakness. And it is important to remember that treatment is effective. People who get appropriate care can recover from mental illness / addiction and lead full, rewarding lives.

Be Social: Instead of watching Netflix or scrolling Facebook, spend as much time as you can with family & friends. Why? When you're socializing, the blood circulates to several different parts of your brain as you're listening and formulating responses.

Brain and memory-boosting Foods: The foods you eat play a role in keeping your brain healthy and can improve specific mental tasks, such as memory and concentration. Berries and Vitamin-C rich fruits, Turmeric, Broccoli, Seeds, Dark Chocolate, Nuts, Green Tea, Coffee, Eggs to name a few contain nutrients that support memory and brain development. Just as important as including these foods in moderation in your diet is steering clear of those that can negatively impact brain health like alcohol & drugs.