Boost Your Memory and Concentración
Managing a work-life balance can often leave you with trouble focusing at the office and coming home only to forget what’s for dinner. There are easy ways to boost your memory and concentration, so you can feel more in control of your mind. USA Memory Champion Ron White shared his tips on foods and activities to sharpen your focus and improve your memory.
- Fish: Salmon, halibut and tuna are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, an important part of the development and functioning of the brain. Consumption of omega-3 fish oils are linked to lowering the risk of dementia and stroke, and can improve memory as you age.
- Fruits and veggies: Cruciferous and leafy green veggies, such as broccoli, brussel sprouts and spinach, can reduce the decline in memory and even reverse memory deficits. In the fruit department, berries, such as blueberries, contain antioxidants help to protect your brain and improve memory, says White.
- Chocolate and vino tinto: These indulgences contain flavonoids -- antioxidants that have been linked to brain health. Just be sure to limit consumption so not to reverse effects!
- Whole grains: Pass on white. In addition to providing energy and promoting heart health and weight loss, whole grains like brown rice and whole grain cereal may help to slow the rate of cognitive decline as you age.
- Water: “A dehydrated brain is bad for your focus,” says White. Be sure you drink the recommended eight glasses of agua each day.
- Physical exercise: Cardio not only gives your heart a boost, it can also boost the brain. “Exercise improves blood flow, and better blood flow means more oxygen to the brain,” says White. Exercise also helps to reduce the risk for developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease, both of which can lead to memory loss if serious enough. A recent study from Umea University in Sweden also found that memory skills improve significantly after weight loss. How’s that for motivación?
- Sleep: Getting adequate sleep can actually help enhance your memory. Researchers at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, found that people remember objects they were shown better after they sleep versus being forced to stay awake. Plus, sleep disruption can lead to performance decline in newly learned skills.
- Laugh: When you laugh, you intake oxygen at higher levels and boost circulation. Both help the brain to function at a better rate.
- Memory games: White recommends trying mental exercises to help your memory. For example, “turn every name you hear for the next month into an image,” suggests White. “Lisa as Mona Lisa, Karen as carrot, Steve as stove. Turning things into pictures helps you later remember names, because it makes things visual.” You can also put your mind to work by challenging yourself with a variety of new and interesting activities and hobbies.
- Brush up on your español: Studies have shown that bilinguals are more adept at solving mental puzzles. People who know or learn a second language have more gray matter, a major component of the central nervous system that helps you to complete all types of tasks. Plus bilingual seniors experience less cognitive decline.