The brain and its cognitive functions change with age. One of the most terrifying sign of aging is brain dysfunction. Nobody wants to be a helpless burden dependent on their relatives. Good news! The brain can be trained just like muscles even if you’re getting pretty old. Here are 11 recommendations for keeping your super brain power and maintaining brain’s activity starting from the age of 35 and forth with food, meditation and binaural frequencies:
1. Your brain has to work/function
The brain, just like the body, needs constant exercise. You need to hit the gym if you want strong and toned muscles, right? So, don’t forget about the brain as well. You can increase serotonin naturally. Make it work with new knowledge and impressions. Through experimenting on mice and people scientists found out that intensive brain activity stimulates formation of new neural pathways and can even help brain generate new cells, developing neurological “flexibility” and creating functional reserve, which protects the brain from “drying-out”.
No need to try to solve “The Three-Body Problem”. You’re better of reading a great eponymous sci-fi novel. Read, solve puzzles, take up a new hobby, music or art. Any new exciting activity will do. The brains loves getting new information. Most of the neuron bonds are formed up until the age of 11, but learning a new language or the first piano lessons getyou super brain power.
2. Do physical exercises
The research shows that training the body helps the brain work better and remain young much longer. Judging by scientists’ observations animals that get enough exercise havemore blood vessels, which deliver oxygen-charged blood to those areas of the brain which work most intensively. Exercising also stimulates the development of new neural cells, enforces cellsynapses and increase serotonin’s level.
This leads to a more effective, flexible and adaptive brain, which, in turn, leads to better productivity among aging animals. Exercising also reduces the level of blood pressure, help control cholesterol level, help balance the level of sugar in your blood and reduce mental stress, which may help your brain just as your body. The human body was designed by nature for active lifestyle. Evolution never had office work in its plans. So, having no exercise we grow older faster. Just as our brain.
3. Watch what you eat
Healthy nutrition may not only help your body, but your brain as well. For instance, people adhering to Mediterranean diet, which includes fruit, vegetables, fish, nuts, thin oils (olive oil) and vegetable protein, are less likely to develop cognitive disorder and dementia. Fat fish is your best friend forever. The same goes for avocado and nuts. Of course, other products shouldn’t be excluded from the ration, but you should think about reducing the level of trans-fats.
Eat more vegetables and don’t get careless with fast-food, and your mind will be clear (and the body fit). Vegans and vegetarians need to be especially attentive while putting together a menu. It’s important to watch the vegetable protein intake and not forget about healthy fats. Consult with your nutritionist if you don’t want to put up a menu yourself. And don’t forget the vitamins!
4. Watch the levels of blood pressure and sugar in the blood
High blood pressure significantly increases the level of cognitive disorder possibility in the old age. Check your blood pressure from time to time. If necessary, consult with your doctor and change your lifestyle the way that your blood pressure stays as stable as possible. Schedule your life, do sports and don’t drink more than 50 grams of alcohol per day.
Another important factor influencing integrity of your brain and clearness of your mind is the level of sugar in your blood. High sugar level leads to diabetes. And diabetes results in cognitive disorder in the older age. However, the good news is that you can fairly easily avoid it. Just take a blood test for sugar from time to time, try eating healthy and do more walking.
5. Don’t abuse alcohol and tobacco
Yes, everybody writes the same thing… because it’s the truth. Alcohol kills brain cells; nicotine deprives them of necessary oxygen. And together they have a really bad effect on brain productivity making it grow older faster. Nothing you can do. The research of how tobacco and alcohol influence brain activitylead to a definite conclusion: if you want to keep your wits up until you’re old, cut down on bad habits.
There’s no need to take an oath to not touch alcohol no matter what (if there’s an avalanche and stuck in a snow trap, a couple of sips of brandy will warm you up better, than unbreakable oaths), but limits should be set. Try not to consume more than 50 grams of alcohol per day and don’t get drunk enough to go “I’m calling my ex!” more than a couple of times a month. If you can’t quit smoking, talk to your doctor in order for him to help you with the alternative to your nicotine (patches, pills), and smoke less cigarettes a day, which will, among other things, save you some money.
6. Get enough sleep
A good night’s sleep is worth it. Regular sleep deprivation reduces the amount of brain cells and significantly degrade mental abilities. Of course, we all could stay up all night when we were 16; we could pass a test and then go partying, but after you hit 30, the tables turn. A good night’s sleep is your best self-investment. Ventilate your rook regularly, buy an air moisturizer, sleep with an open window, go to bed and get up systematically.
Set an alarm clock half an hour before bedtime, so that when it starts ringing, you start getting ready to go to bed. Prepare your clothes for tomorrow, calm your mind, think about your plans in the morning. Thus, you’ll fall asleep easier and avoid morning fuss. While sleeping, the brain does a clean-up, sorting out daily impressions and getting rid of everything unnecessary; give it enough for that and it will reward you. If you have problems falling asleep, ask your doctor to prescribe you medications based on melatonin and try listening to brainwave sounds, which helps with deep relaxation. More about that in item 8.
7. Social connections are important
Our brain is made for communication. As a neurobiologist Matthew Liberman of Harvard University says: “The aim of the brain is to think socially”. The smaller the animal, the smaller it’s brain. An elephant has a huge brain weighing about 5 kilograms. A mouse has a tiny brain of 500 milligrams of weight. Now, that’s logical.
However, that principle cannot be applied to a human being. Our brain is too large compared to our body and here’s why: the size of the brain has directly to do with the size of the social group of the species. Our brain is so large so that we can communicate. And we must communicate. Researches show that people who have more than 5 strong social connections are much more successful in reflective work in the older age. Generally, the amount of social connectionsshortens after 30.
Well, make some effort. Go out for drinks with your friends. Do it for your brain, if not for yourself. (And congratulate you aunt with her birthday; that boring hour-long phone call it’s not the relaxing brain waves music but it can help you accept your age with dignity someday).
8. Binaural beats improve brain activity
Special brainwave sound that set the proper tone for our brain is a relatively new discovery, however raising a lot of interest. Binaural beats consist of 2 tons of slightly different frequencies separately projected into each ear. They feel like they’re generated right inside your head. The brain, however, sets itself to a frequency generated by the two combined. They are usually entwined into a pleasant music, which helps the effect. Oh, yes, it doesn’t work without headphones. But what’s it all about? This music can to increase serotonin level of your body.
Frequencies match the state of brain and let you deeply relax without any effort and vice versa – concentrate when it’s necessary. Using brain wave stimulation is safe and spring into motion body’s natural processes, so you there’s no risks for you.
Try these modes:
Deep relaxations: frequencies between 5 and 10 Hz are used for different levels of relaxations and brain wave stimulation
Sleep substitution: a 30-minute 5 Hz session substitutes up to 2-3 hours of sleep, letting you wake up early in the morning feeling more cheerful. You should listen to it half-an-hour before going to bed and getting up.
Fighting insomnia: 4 and 6 Hz waves during first 10 minutes, then switching to frequencies lower than 3,5 Hz (for 20-30 minutes), gradually getting to 2,5 Hz in the end.
Raising tone: theta-waves (4-7 Hz) for 45 minutes a day.
The simplest way is downloading a phone app with relaxing brain waves(search for free ones to save some money).
9. Take care of your consciousness and emotional zone
We are covered by tons of information every day, and not all of it is worthwhile. Your head, just like any box, can get “overloaded” and that’s never good. Anxiety, having trouble sleeping and panic attacks will fast become your friends if the only things you read are crime stats. It is necessary to screen the incoming content. You don’t eat everything you see, right? It’s unlikely that passing a dump in the morning you thought: “Oh, what a nice rotten piece of lettuce! I think I’ll eat!” But here is some dubious news: empty stories and shocking videos are still attractive.
Guard your consciousness. Use reliable sources and don’t indulge in “sensations”. Make a choice toward a good book or a professional resource. Pass a horror movie if deep down you know that it’s going to be hard for you to go past the mirror in the evening. Close your eyes when you here “shocking content”. Maybe action heroes don’t act like that, but they hardly avoid cognitive disorder later on. And they usually don’t get to grow old.
The benefit of meditation has long been proved. It reduces stress, helps producing necessary hormones and improves concentration. Meditate by yourselves, with a mentor or with the help of binaural beats at least 10 minutes a day and your life will quite change, you can even increase serotonin naturally. Leading scientists and Dalai-Lama personally guarantee that. There are many different ways to meditate, and you will definitely find yours.
Meditate with mantras or contemplate flowing water – either way regular meditation will help your brain remain young unbelievably long (seriously, look at Dalai-Lama!). There are serious clinical researches showing that meditation a perfect brain “preservative”, you also can use binaural beats brain waves.
11. Do something new every week
Write with your left hand sometimes; sing if you don’t and jump on one leg if you’re a respectable mature man. Do something unusual for you every week. The new experience affects your brain like an energy drink and helps it function better and remain young longer. Traveling, by the way, also work: a short trip to see the nearest sights is just as healthy for the brain as deep immersion into some other culture, and not so hard on your wallet.
Try some different workshops (classes). Try dancing, volleyball and choir singing. Maybe you won’t take all that up, but you’ll have fun and fill your head with new impressions, get new acquaintances, but remember item 7.
It’s not so hard to get super brain power. All you need is a little effort, so that with time you get smarter and more productive. Take breathtaking examples of older people who achieved success closer to the end of their lives. Learn their stories and adapt their principles. They usually have a family; they sleep enough and well and eat properly. Find out what scientists think about that and try everything that science offers, starting with vitamin complexes up to binaural frequencies. Use the experience of people of the ancient and don’t forget about meditation and a balanced diet, and being 80 you’ll be just as full of life as you are now.