The month of January is dedicated to creating awareness and spreading useful facts and information about Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia that is affects the elderly. In recognition of this campaign, we would like to some helpful facts about the brain and keeping it healthy.
Each time a new memory is created in our brain, new connections are created. This helps serve to keep the brain active. Research has shown that social activity is one of the best ways to make these new connections, and it also helps to prevent dementia. Staying involved in the community and keeping in touch with friends and family is a good way to achieve this.
Did you know that the brain is made up of roughly 75% water? That is why it is extremely important to keep hydrated. Even moderate levels of dehydration can have an adverse effect on how your brain performs. You should try to drink approximately 2 litres of water a day to allow your mind and body to function at an optimal level.
If that seems like too much and you find you are having to force yourself to drink that much water, you can spread it out over the course of the day. Have a glass when you wake up, keep water by your bed and your favorite chair, have water before or with meals, and carry a water bottle when you head outside. Another good beverage for keeping hydrated is herbal tea, especially when it is cold out.
Even though the brain makes up only about 2% of the body’s weight, it utilizes 20% of available energy. Because it requires so much energy, sufficient fuel is needed for optimal function. This fuel comes in the from of healthy an nutritious food. Maintaining a balanced diet promotes a healthy body and mind.
Brian activity actually starts to slow down at the age of 24, even though our brains are not fully developed until around the age of 25. Brain activity may begin to slow down at 24, but our brains reach higher levels of various cognitive functions at different stages of life. Therefore, it is important to always be exercising your brain. You should be constantly exposing your brain to new experiences such as:
- Learn a new skill
- Learn a new language
- Word games
- Do simple math in your head
- Draw a map from memory
- Learn a musical instrument
- Try new recipes
You can also keep your brain active by trying new approaches to your daily routine. For instance, try walking a different route than you normally take or try brushing your teeth with your opposite hand.