It’s easy to believe it’s too late for change. If you’re getting older, you simply may have resigned to the fact that your future is predetermined.
Memory loss is something people take for granted. They believe that no matter what, brainpower is going to decline as they get older. There is a small bit of truth to a lackluster memory with age: you may not remember things that have lost priority in your life. This makes sense, however. Space for new memories and information is required.
But dementia or severe memory loss is not a natural part of aging. There are even things you can start doing right now to help reduce the risk of memory loss and dementia. So, if you don’t want to feel destined for cognitive decline, here are five things you can do to boost or maintain brain health.
- Start exercising: Getting outside for a five-minute walk per day and eventually building up to 30-minutes can help improve blood flow to the brain. Research has indicated walking at a moderate or brisk pace can improve symptoms of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), a precursor to dementia.
- Limit booze consumption: Alcohol can limit oxygen to the brain and diminish brain cells while causing inflammation. Maxing out at one standard drink per day is a good idea, and substituting with tonic water, club soda, or non-alcoholic beer during special occasions is recommended.
- Boost intake of whole foods: More fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and unprocessed meats can help limit inflammation and promote brain health and memory maintenance.
- Include fish in your weekly eating plan: Having two or three servings of fatty fish per week can also help to maintain and support a healthy brain. Salmon and mackerel are terrific options. One word of advice: do not fry or deep fry the fish, or you’ll lose the brain-boosting omega-3 fatty acids.
- Stay socially active: Spending time with friends, participating in community events, joining groups that go hiking, book clubs, or exercise classes can all help maintain a healthy mind.