So doing the occasional sodoku on the train home might not be enough to keep your brain in tip top condition. Naturopath Rachael Aldridge shares her tips for maintaining good brain health.
1. Include moderate exercise in your daily routine
It helps reduce stress and has been shown to boost mood.
2. Get enough sleep
Researchers do not fully understand why we sleep and dream, but they do know a process called memory consolidation occurs during sleep. Hence, getting more quality sleep will help you remember and process things better.
3. Throw away the calculator!
Next time you need to do some sums, instead of reaching for the calculator do it the old fashioned way to keep your brain active. Brain exercises like crosswords or Sudoku puzzles can hold you in good stead.
4. Eat more ‘smart foods’
For example animal studies have found that blueberries help protect the brain from oxidative stress, while nuts and seeds are rich in vitamin E, a vitamin which in higher levels corresponds with less cognitive decline.
5. Try something fishy
Omega-3 found in oily fish such as salmon, tuna and sardines are essential for brain health. But research shows 3 in 5 Aussies are not getting the recommended 2-3 serves each week.5 Just 1 capsule per day of Omega-3 supplement, Nature’s Own™ Omega Platinum, can be the hassle-free way to bridge the gap.
6. Reduce intake of saturated fats
Where possible, choose unsaturated types such as olive and canola oils.
7. Avoid smoking and excessive drinking of alcohol
Smoking and drinking excessive amounts of alcohol are risk factors for a number of chronic diseases.
“Fatty acids are particularly helpful in maintaining cognitive function, including memory and concentration. The recommended daily intake of Omega-3 can help achieve this,” says Aldridge, Nature’s Own Naturopath.
“Omega-3 is important across all stages of life. Infants require it for the growth and functional development of their brains, and the same nutrient is essential for adults to maintain normal brain function. Clinical research has also shown that fish consumption may help maintain cognitive function and memory in the ageing brain.”
Puzzles? Learning another language? Fish oil? What do you do to maintain good brain health?