The thought of growing old always makes people anxious as it brings about certain challenges. Although it’s a natural part of the human experience, aging doesn’t have to be extremely taxing. One of the struggles that sounds pretty unsettling to many when they’re growing old is memory loss. Everyone knows how jarring it can be when you’re talking to people and you suddenly don’t know what their names are.
Surprisingly, there are different effective ways to counter memory loss while keeping the memory sharp.
1. Stay Committed To Learning
Advanced education is linked with better brain performance in old age. It keeps the memory sharp by making the brain engage in challenging activities.
A lot of people have careers that keep their brains actively functioning. But engaging in different hobbies or developing a new skill can help just as much. Find time to read books, answer crossword puzzles, play chess, take music classes etc. Commit to experiences that stimulate the brain.
At work, whenever necessary, aim to join a project that involves using a skill that you don’t use on a regular basis. Building and nourishing brain connection is a continuing process, so it’s highly necessary to make learning a lifelong priority.
2. Opt For An Improved Diet
Avoid eating red meat, poultry skin, and high-fat dairy products as these foods contain high levels of saturated fat, which is associated with poor memory. Such types of fat can build up in the brain over time just as cholesterol can build up in the heart.
Cholesterol buildup in the blood vessels of the brain can lead to the damage of its tissue. This happens because the brain is deprived of oxygen-rich blood, which helps in its normal functioning.
Go for diets that consist mostly of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seafood, and olive oil. These foods are rich in unsaturated fats, which have been shown to improve brain function and lower the risk of memory deterioration.
3. Get Enough Sleep
Getting a power nap after learning something new is a surefire way to boost memory. A study was conducted to show whether sleep has a direct impact on retention. It turns out that people who slept for eight hours after getting in touch with new people were better at recalling than those who slept insufficiently.
Nicolas Dumay, a renowned psychologist, found out that sleep does not only protect the brain from memory loss. It also helps people retrieve memories more efficiently. Sleep works by “resetting” the brain, which is critical for good brain functioning.
If a person does not get enough sleep, the neurons in the brain get overconnected. This leads to a great amount of electrical activity, which can prevent the brain from saving fresh memories. So make it a point to get enough sleep regularly and avoid late-night cramming if you’re a student.
4. Use A CPAP Machine
If you are suffering from OSA (obstructive sleep apnea), you may need to use a medical device that facilitates better sleep. OSA is a condition in which a person experiences a collapse of their upper airway in a periodic manner during sleep. This disorder affects normal brain functioning as the sleep deprivation it causes leads to the damage of neurons.
Consider a continuous positive airway pressure machine, or CPAP machine, to regulate the sleep cycle. It works by delivering air at a constant pressure that keeps the person’s airway open. When a person inhales, it gives a higher pressure of air and does the opposite when they exhale.
CPAP is designed to detect and deliver the minimum level of air pressure that a patient needs to prevent apneic episodes. Since this machine helps people with OSA get better sleep, it can greatly contribute to improved memory performance.
5. Exercise Regularly
The human brain relies heavily on oxygen to work properly. In order to achieve that, one needs a healthy stream of oxygen-rich blood in his brain. Exercise makes this possible as it facilitates blood flow to the brain.
Exercise, such as aerobics, activates great levels of cathepsin B. This type of protein goes to the brain and enables neuron growth and connections in the brain’s hippocampus.
Physical exercise also plays an important role in the enhancement of the effects of good brain chemicals and the reduction of stress hormones. Furthermore, exercise can help a person deal with mental fatigue and afternoon slumps. A short walk and moderate jumping jacks should be enough to boot up the brain.
Always Prioritise Brain Health
As a person gets old, they will experience crucial changes in his life. Part of this change is the decline in mental function. Although this is a natural process, one can always choose to delay it. Taking care of the brain and mental health is a pure form of self-love.
Always choose to prioritise overall health. You can start by practicing a lifestyle that encourages improved memory.