Keep your mind young & sharp. Give your life a soundtrack!

Keep your mind young & sharp. Give your life a soundtrack!

Your brain gets a mental workout when you stream your favorite playlist. Not only can listening to music help you feel more alert, but it also boosts your memory and your mood!

Here are a few tips to that will steer you in the right direction.

Make time for new friends!
Getting to know new people boosts your brain’s “executive function” as much as doing a crossword puzzle. This set of mental skills includes your short-term memory, power to tune out distractions, and ability to stay focused

Keep on laughing :-)
Stress can make your brain release a hormone called cortisol, which makes it hard to think clearly. Over time, high levels of stress can cause trouble with your learning and memory. A fun way to protect your brain is to have a good laugh. It can lower cortisol levels and help keep your brain healthy and happy.

Nature has a calming effect and can ease stress:
Looking out a window or spending time outdoors, you give your brain a rest from the constant flow of data and stimulus it gets throughout the day. This lets it reboot its ability to focus, so you may feel more creative and better able to solve problems. Breathe and enjoy.

Mix it up.
Although there is nothing wrong with routine, eating the same breakfast everyday or driving the same route.. Humans are creatures of habit. But it’s good for your brain to try to mix things up. Even once a week can help. A change in routine boosts your brain’s ability to learn new info and hold onto it.

Focus on one thing at a time!
When your brain is hit with several streams of info at once, it has to sift through it all. This makes it harder for you to focus, manage your memory, and switch from one thing to another. Go easy on your brain and give one thing your full attention at a time.

Whether you say a mantra or just focus on breathing, meditation can help with high blood pressure or high cholesterol. (Both can raise your chances of Alzheimer’s.) Studies show it also can boost your focus, memory, and ability to choose words, and it can make it easier to switch from one thought to another. The reasons for this aren’t clear, but one theory is that meditation gives your brain a break from concrete words and thoughts

Break a sweat:
Working out is as good for your brain as it is for your body. Exercise keeps your reasoning and thinking skills sharp because it ramps up the blood flow to your brain

Rest up:
Aim for 7-9 hours each night. If you don’t get enough sleep, even a simple task can take more mental effort than it would otherwise.

Watching your calorie intake:
The more calories you take in, the higher your chances of memory loss may be. The reason isn’t clear-cut, but a greater BMI (body mass index) at middle age is linked to poor brain health later in life.

Feed Your brain:
Certain foods work hard to protect your brain. These include fruits, veggies, legumes, fish, and “good” fats like the ones in canola and olive oils. A daily cup of tea or coffee also can help your brain wake up. But watch the carbs -- aim for no more than 20 grams a day. More than that wreaks havoc on your blood sugar, and over time, that can hurt your memory and raise your odds of Alzheimer’s.

Stop Smoking:
Many chemicals in cigarettes are toxic to your brain, so you might not be surprised to learn that smoking’s linked to mental decline and dementia. And the same goes for secondhand smoke.
It only takes 24 hours of being smoke-free for your body to feel good effects.

Take care of your Heart:
If your heart’s in poor health, you’re more likely to have learning and memory problems. Being overweight and not getting enough exercise can make your blood vessels narrow. This limits the amount of blood that flows to your brain, and your arteries may start to harden. High blood pressure is the biggest sign that your brain’s health is at risk

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