"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

The worst habits to your brain

These 4 areas have the best impact on cognitive function.

Too much sitting

The average adult sits for six and a half hours a day, and all that chair time does a number on the brain. A 2018 study PLoS One Too much sitting has been linked to changes in an element of the brain that is vital for memory. Researchers used MRI scans to have a look at a region of the brain that forms recent memories in people between the ages of 45 and 75. Those who sat the longest had thinner MTL regions. According to the researchers, MTL thinning could also be a precursor to cognitive decline and dementia.

do that: Tanzi recommends moving after 15 to half-hour of sitting. “Set an ongoing timer on your phone as a reminder.” Make your movements energetic. Take a walk across the house, do push-ups against the kitchen counter, do several squats or lunges, or take a brisk power walk across the neighborhood.

Lack of socialization

Loneliness is related to depression and an increased risk of Alzheimer's and might speed up cognitive decline. A study in July 2021 Journals of Gerontology: Series B It found that less socially energetic people lost more of the brain's gray matter, the outer layer that processes information.

do that: Staying socially engaged during COVID has been a challenge, but Tanzi says you don't have to interact with quite a lot of people to reap the advantages. “Find two or three people with whom you can share basically anything,” he says. Make this group your social pod. Text or call them recurrently or arrange a weekly Zoom cocktail hour (no alcohol required). “You want meaningful and mentally stimulating interactions, so choose people you care about and who care about you,” Tanzi says.

Insufficient sleep

According to the CDC, one-third of adults don't get the beneficial seven to eight hours of sleep. Research within the December 2018 issue to sleep It found that cognitive skills — reminiscent of memory, reasoning, and problem solving — decline when people sleep lower than seven hours per night.

do that: Don't concentrate on oversleeping. A greater way is to offer yourself more time to sleep. “Force yourself to go to bed an hour earlier than usual,” says Tanzi. “This will help reduce late nights and give your mind and body extra time to get enough sleep.” If Give your mind time to rest once you're awake, says Tanzi Staying up somewhat longer, you continue to have that extra hour to make up for it.”

Chronic stress

Chronic stress can kill brain cells and shrink the prefrontal cortex, which is liable for memory and learning. A giant stress trigger for older adults is having “my way or the highway” for every little thing, Tanzi says. “This high-expectation mindset can trigger negative reactions that increase stress levels whenever things don't go your way.”

do that: Be flexible along with your reactions. When you are feeling such as you're about to panic, take a number of deep breaths and remind yourself that you just don't at all times know what's best, and accept that other ways might work. Also, calm yourself by repeating the mantra, “I'm fine now.” “Taking control of your ego can eliminate stress before it gets out of control,” Tanzi says.

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