A lot of your daily habits affect your brain in a bad way. Know them and make sure you reduce doing them.
1. Excessive sitting
The average adult spends six and a half hours every day sitting down, and this has an adverse effect on the brain. Spending too much time sitting can alter the structure of the memory-related part of the brain. The medial temporal lobe (MTL), a part of the brain that creates new memories, was examined using MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scans in individuals between the ages of 45 and 75. After that, they made a comparison between the scans and the subjects’ typical daily sitting time. The MTL regions of those who sat for the longest were thinner. The researchers found that MTL thinning could be a sign of dementia and cognitive decline.
Researchers advise getting up and moving around after 15 to 30 minutes of sitting. Use your phone’s timer to continuously remind you. Be active with your motions. Take a brief power walk around the neighborhood, do push-ups against the kitchen counter, perform a lot of squats, or simply take a quick walk around the house.
2. Social isolation
Loneliness has been associated with sadness, a higher chance of developing Alzheimer’s, and it can hasten cognitive deterioration. The grey matter, the outer layer of the brain that processes information, is lost more quickly in less socially active adults, according to a July 2021 study. Find two or three individuals that you can share anything with. Make this team your social network. Set up a weekly call or a cocktail hour or send them regular texts or phone calls (alcohol not required). You want to interact with important and intellectually fascinating individuals, so choose those who care about you and about them.
3. Not enough sleep
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) estimates that one-third of Americans do not receive the seven to eight hours of sleep per night that are ideal. According to research published in the December 2018 issue of Sleep, persons who sleep less than seven hours a night have a reduction in cognitive abilities like memory, reasoning, and problem-solving.
Avoid concentrating on getting more sleep. To improve your strategy, give yourself additional time to sleep. Make a conscious effort to get into bed an hour earlier than normal, researchers suggest. This will make it easier to sleep in and offer your body and brain more time to do so. Give your thoughts some time to unwind if you do wake up. They do advise you against watching TV or using a laptop because they can be exciting. Instead, try reading. You still have that extra hour to make up for it, even if you are awake for a time.
4. Persistent stress
The prefrontal cortex, which controls memory and learning, can shrink and brain cells can die because of persistent stress. A ‘my way or the highway attitude toward everything is a significant stressor for older folks, according to researchers. When things do not go your way, this high expectation mindset might kick off adverse reactions that increase stress.
Do this: Be nimble in how you react. When you feel yourself starting to become agitated, take a few deep breaths, acknowledge that you do not always know what is best, and realize that other solutions might work just as well. Additionally, recite the mantra ‘I’m all right, right now to yourself to relax. Researchers assert that taming your ego can stop stress in its tracks before it spirals out of hand.
5. You spend far too much time alone
People are sociable creatures by nature. The number of friends on Facebook you have is irrelevant; what matters is a genuine sense of connection. People who share that, even with a small group of close friends, are happier and more successful. Additionally, they have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s and cognitive deterioration. If you are feeling lonely, phone some friends or join a group activity like bridge, tennis, or salsa dancing.
6. You consume too much fast food
People who consume a lot of hamburgers, fries, potato chips, and soft beverages have smaller brain regions that are associated with learning, memory, and mental wellness. On the other hand, berries, whole grains, nuts, and leafy green vegetables protect brain function and delay mental deterioration. So, the next time you reach for a bag of chips, switch to a handful of almonds.
7. Your headphones are blasting
In just 30 minutes, listening to your earbuds at maximum level will permanently harm your hearing. It is not just your ears, though: Alzheimer’s disease and the degeneration of brain tissue are connected to hearing loss in elderly persons. This can be the case because your brain must work too hard to understand what is being spoken around you for it to be remembered. To avoid hearing damage, dial the volume down to no more than 60% of your device’s maximum level and try not to listen for longer than a few hours at a time.
8. Not Moving Enough
Dementia is more likely to develop the longer you do not regularly exercise. Diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure are also more likely to affect you, and they may all be related to Alzheimer’s. Running marathons is not necessary; a half-hour in the garden or a quick stroll through the neighborhood would do. It is crucial to exercise at least three days every week.
9. You Keep Smoking
Your brain may shrink as a result, which is not a good thing. It deteriorates your memory and doubles your risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer’s. Additionally, it contributes to excessive blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
10. Eating too much
Your brain might not be able to create the dense network of connections that support your ability to think and recall if you eat too much food, even if it is the proper kind of food. If you overeat for an extended period, you may become dangerously overweight, which can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure, all of which are associated with Alzheimer’s and brain disorders.
You keep too much to yourself in the dark
Lack of natural light can lead to depression, which might impede your brain function. Additionally, studies indicate that exposure to sunlight keeps your brain healthy, and this has an adverse effect on the brain.
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