Doing This One Thing Daily Helps Keep a Healthy Brain
Health and wellness have a much broader definition than they did in the past. Nowadays, it goes beyond the simple topics of diet and exercise to incorporate all realms of physical, mental, and emotional well-being. In other words, running a seven-minute mile is great, but we’re aiming to reach other goals ahead of that—namely, feeling an internal sense of wellness and balance.
To us, a big part of that is a healthy brain. We want to know that we’re doing everything in our power to support the speed, accuracy, and longevity of our cognitive function. Because however sad it may be, the truth is that our brain ages along with the rest of our bodies.
The good news is this: Staving off cognitive decline is easier than you think. And no, it doesn’t involve intricate brain games or puzzles. Keep scrolling to see the easy (and totally free) secret to maintaining a healthy brain!
What to Do for a Healthy Brain
You’ve probably read articles like this before where getting off your phone and doing puzzles like sudoku are the best way to unwind and keep your brain sharp after being in front of electronics all day. Well, you might be surprised to hear that normal brain games may not work because they focus on too narrow of a task. It’s only targeting a small portion of your brain’s functioning.
It’s only the more complex brain training, used in various research studies, that may make a difference. They delay the onset of cognitive impairment and keep your brain working at the same level longer, compared to people who did not receive those same cognitive training interventions.
So essentially, brain games and so-called training won’t hurt, but they might not affect the onset of degenerating brain conditions like Alzheimer’s. What will help, however, is social interaction (yes, really!). People who have a lot of social interactions, particularly in mid-life, have a lower risk of Alzheimer’s dementia in later life. There’s something about being around people that is helpful for our brains.
One study, in particular, found that the greater someone’s self-reported loneliness is, the higher their risk for dementia is. Scary, right? Luckily, the cure for loneliness and social isolation is pretty simple: Surround yourself with more people. Whether that means joining a new book club, grabbing a drink with a co-worker, or visiting a friend, being social could prevent cognitive decline, and we’ll most definitely make some weeknight plans to that. Going out is easier said than done, especially if you have social anxiety.
That being said, even spending a little bit of time in an environment with people can be beneficial. Go to a book store (instead of shopping on Amazon) or grab a coffee at your local coffee shop! It may seem strange that this is the daily way to keep your brain healthy but if you think about it, social interacting versus being glued to your phone or TV is definitely a better option and gets you space, happiness, and stimulates your brain in a much healthier fashion!
Keep scrolling to see six favorite products for boosting productivity for a healthy brain too:
- A Planner. Who doesn’t love a durable planner with a kitschy phrase on the front? For the busy business owner or multi-tasking parent, an old fashioned planner that you can update nightly keeps our important dates, meetings, and deadlines in order. It also helps us not always rely on our phones for everything.
- Portable charger. Now, if you do need to have your life on your phone, make sure running out of battery won’t stop you from getting work done or receiving those vital notifications. If you’re always on the go, invest in a portable charger that you can stash away in your bag. It’ll save you from a dead battery too many times to count in no time!
- Essential Oil Diffuser. A chic addition to your desk or office while also lifting the stress away? We’ll take it! Lemon, grapefruit, and mint are a great combination that will softly infuse the air, making your desk smell like a dream. More importantly, though, these scents are energizing and uplifting. Who knows? Maybe aromatherapy is the key to getting all of our work done without reaching for that third cup of coffee!
- Apple Watch. Receive calls, texts, emails, and more, even if you’re unable to take out your phone (e.g. you’re in a meeting yet simultaneously and desperately trying to coordinate a project with a colleague or see if one of your kids is calling you). In that case, it’s the Apple Watch for the win. Plus, it keeps track of your steps and heart rate for a healthy way to make sure you’re staying on top of your own wellness in the midst of your busy day!
- Blue Light Blocking Glasses. This type of trending eyeglasses blocks certain wavelengths of electronic blue light, which has been shown to affect your brain by messing up sleep cycles and throwing you off your natural rhythm. It’s also been known to reduce squinting and headaches from computer screen lights!