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Health Blog

5 Ways to Keep Your Mind Sharp as You Age. 

As we age, our brain shrinks and the blood flow within it slows. The brain loses volume which affects nerve connections and in turn brain function. 

Unfortunately, there isn’t a magic pill to prevent cognitive decline just yet, but there are several steps we can take to support our brain heath as we age. 

Eat healthy: 

Research shows that the best brainfoods are the same ones that support your heart and blood vessels. 

Green leafy vegetables, such as kale, spinach and broccoli are high in nutrients like vitamin K and folate which could help to slow cognitive decline. 

Fatty fish like cod, salmon and tuna is high in omega-3 fatty acids which allow brain cells to communicate better with each other. 

Berries contain high levels of antioxidants which protect cells from damage, boosting brain function and preventing memory loss. 

Nuts are great for brain health, with walnuts from reigning supreme. They have a significantly high concentration of DHA (a type of omega 3) which improves learning ability. 

Exercise regularly:

Staying physically active increases blood flow and brings new blood to areas of the body especially the brain. Exercising also reduces the risk of developing high blood pressure which is associated with the development of dementia. 

Stay mentally active:

Challenge your brain with new activities to help build new brain cells and strengthen connections between them. There are lots of ways to do a daily mental work out such as crosswords, puzzles, reading, taking up a new hobby or learning a new skill.  

Stay socially engaged:

Keeping up with friends and family wards off both depression and stress. Volunteering or joining a club can be a great way to meet new people and boost your brain health through social interaction. 

Quit smoking: 

Smoking is not only bad for your lungs and cardiovascular health it also accelerates the aging of the brain. Smoking damages the cerebral cortex which is the part of the brain that is important for thinking, memory, and learning. The good news is the damage to the brain caused by smoking can be partially reversed if you quit. So start now! 

Participate in research:

Researchers are working to understand how we can prevent cognitive decline as we age.  We are currently evaluating the effect of a food supplement on cognitive performance. Consider joining this study to be a partner in discovering new scientific knowledge.

More information on our current cognition study here.

 

Maeve Cronin

Maeve Cronin / About Author