Cognitive fitness is a hot topic these days. We expect that seemingly inevitable decline in our physical and mental function. At the same time we’re looking for that one solution, that magic pill or potion, that will help us maintain our abilities in both areas.
Well, there’s no magic to it. In both areas, take good care of it, and use it or lose it.
Here are 10 things to help you maintain, or even improve your cognitive fitness.
Exercise — Research has shown again and again that physical activity is good for your brain as well as your body. Exercise can increase the level of certain hormones that are important for cognitive functions like memory.
Brain Training Games — There are many brain training games, all aimed at improving cognitive ability. Puzzle solving is important for the brain, and if done regularly, can improve cognitive function. Brain training games can help delay to onset of diseases like Alzheimer’s.
Music — Yes, music soothes the savage beast, and it can help to improve cognitive function. It’s even more effective when combined with exercise.
Sleep — Sleep is essential for many bodily functions. If you want to improve your cognitive ability, you need a good nights’ sleep.
Manage Stress — There is good stress and bad stress. Many of us suffer from too much of the bad stress. It exhausts us. Our cognitive abilities suffer. It’s a part of life. We can’t get rid of it altogether, so we need to learn to manage it.
Be More Sociable — We are sociable creatures. We need social interaction to function effectively, physically and cognitively. Being more sociable and having more relationships can help to prevent a decline in memory.
Eat More Brain Friendly Foods — We know the importance of a healthy diet for our waistlines and overall health. Some foods are more beneficial, and others less so, when it comes to our cognitive health. Say yes to fish, fruit, vegetables, and green tea. Cut out the saturated fats.
Doodling — Does doodling seem like a waste of time? Maybe you think it’s childish. But, guess what? Doodling keeps your brain stimulated and active when it otherwise might not be. Again, use it or lose it.
Take Up A New Hobby — Just the thought of a new activity is beneficial for your cognitive fitness. When you actually start doing the activity, your brain will be forced to make new connections. That can actually improve your cognitive abilities.
Enjoy A Little Caffeine — Maybe you’ve heard only negative things about coffee. Too much of anything can be bad. But, caffeine produces a temporary boost in cognitive performance. It can help you focus and perform when needed.