As we move along the line of aging, our brain begin to decline in it capabilities and cognitive functions, this usually occur between the age of 50-80. Generally we may begin to notice a slower processing speed in our brain, difficulties in remembering words and recalling names and past events; a condition called dementia. However, there is no cure for dementia but there are several ways of avoiding this condition and several ways one can cope with it when it occur.
Below are things you need to be mindful of if you are to maintain a good brain health.
Our body need sugar, as well as the brain, in fact half of the sugar we consume in food is used up by the brain alone because the brain depends strictly on glucose in order to provide the energy needed for it activities. The brain uses the energy from that sugar to power neurotransmitters, which facilitate communication throughout the brain and are fundamental for memory and learning. But sugar promotes inflammation throughout the body so excess of it could lead to brain atrophy.
You are Over stressing you self
Although how stress impacts brain health is not well understood but however, study have shown that when brain is subjected under chronic stress it has less grey matter in the prefrontal cortex. Veterans who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder are more likely to develop dementia and also Alzheimer’s patients with higher stress levels deteriorate faster.
You are not having regular sleep
Lack of sleep does a whole lot of negative things to your body most especially the brain. It's best to have regular sleeping hours. If you are having insomnia whether acute of chronic, you may want to consider finding solution to it as soon as possible in order to prevent damaging your brain latter in life.
You are spending too much time alone
Don't subject your self to selfish isolation, try not to be too alone with yourself, although you may say you enjoy being alone but the fact is that your loneliness may be impacting you brain in a negative way of which you may not be aware of. Spend time with friends and have fun, it all worth it and may improve your overall well being.
You Stay in the Dark Too Much
If you don’t get enough natural light, research have shown that you may get depressed, and that can slow your brain activity. Research have also shown that sunlight helps keep your brain working well.
You are not keeping your weight on check
Study have shown that there is an association between neurodegeneration and obesity. Elevated body fat promotes brain atrophy (a loss of neurons and neural connections) by increasing cellular oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. A person with body mass index greater than 30 have been shown to have 10% less white matter in their brains compared with their lean peers. Generally Obese individuals will easily suffer brain deterioration.
You are taking the wrong medications:
Certain classes of medications should be used very thoughtfully as we age. These include benzodiazepines (i.e. Xanax, valium) that can be sedating and slow processing speed, and anticholinergic drugs (i.e. diphenhydramine, loperamide, ranitidine) that have been shown to affect short term memory, executive functioning-planning, problem solving, and verbal reasoning. It is always good to speak with your doctor before going on medication to know if the meds will have a negative impact on the brain.
You are Not Exercising Enough
Exercise have been shown to boost brain health. When we exercise, our body releases serotonin which is a neurotransmitter that helps to improve the communication between nerve cells. Serotonin brings a feelings of well-being and happiness, it enhances cognitive function, learning process and memory. Having time for exercise is a good way of maintaining a healthy brain function.
You are not keeping eye on your blood pressure
Scientists have found that high blood pressure in middle age, and low blood pressure after age 75 both increase the risk of Alzheimer’s. Always try to put your blood pressure on check to know how normal it is.