Boost Your Midlife Brain Health

The human brain naturally shrinks with age, meaning that brain cells do not work quite as effectively as they used to. By the time a person reaches the age of 45, the memory begins to decline, as do other aspects of brain health. However, there are a number of ways in which you can boost a midlife brain to improve its health while giving it some extra protection for the upcoming years.

Man doing puzzle

Brain Exercises
There are many brain games and puzzles out there that are designed to help create new associations between different parts of your brain, which is great for strengthening it and keeping it sharp. You can also try carrying out normal, everyday activities, but using your non-dominant hand. For example, if you are usually right-handed, try using your left hand to do everything from brushing your teeth to hoovering the carpet.

Woman running with dog

Regular Exercise
One of the most effective ways in which you can boost your brain health is by partaking in regular exercise, as this has been proven, for many years, to be able to boost cognitive function. It does this by reducing cell damage and inflammation while increasing the density of brain cells, as well as blood vessels in the brain. When it comes to the different types of exercise out there, aerobic exercise is one of the best, as this can help with the parts of the brain that are associated with organizing, multi-tasking, and planning, while boosting heart health at the same time. Resistance training has been linked to beneficial effects on the memory, as has low-intensity yoga, so try to include these in your exercise routine too.

Control Your Blood Sugar Levels
Not only does high blood sugar levels lead to obesity and diabetes, but this also damages blood vessels in the brain, while impairing the parts of the brain that are responsible for memory. Lowering your blood sugar levels is as simple as making a few lifestyle changes, from practicing regular exercise to eating a diet high in vegetables, fibre and whole grains.

Group of friends

Socializing
Humans are social creatures, and, as studies have shown, socializing is important when it comes to keeping the brain stimulated and sharp. Research has shown that older adults who are less socially active tend to experience more cognitive and physical limitations, so make sure that socializing takes a priority in your life.

Brain-Boosting Foods
While a healthy diet itself is important for your brain, as well as your body, there are certain foods out there that are known for being especially beneficial when it comes to brain health. At the top of the list are foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids, such as oily fish and walnuts, as these have been linked to improved memory and focus, as well as a lowered risk of dementia.

Your brain is incredibly complex, but boosting its health does not need to be. From physical activity and a healthy diet to brain games and socializing, these tips will help you to keep your mind as sharp as possible while your body continues to age.

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How to Have Your Best Vacation Ever

Woman in a yacht

When you think back to all the vacations that you have previously taken, it is likely that some of them brought you much more happiness and enjoyment than others, but have you ever stopped to wonder why? It turns out that there are a variety of factors that contribute to how happy your vacation makes you, and, once you understand exactly what these are, there is absolutely nothing to stop your next vacation from being the best one that you have ever had.

Planning
While spontaneous trips are often fun, a certain level of planning is essential if you want to make the most of your vacation. Not only does planning your vacation in advance allow your excitement to build up over the weeks or months, but, once you are actually there, it takes away some of the decisions that you may have otherwise needed to make on the spot, allowing you to simply relax and enjoy yourself.

Try Something New
For children, a vacation seems to last forever, and that is because of all of the new experiences that their brain takes time to process. The best way to replicate this as an adult is to make sure that you fill your vacation with as many new experiences as you can. Whether this may be trying new foods or trying a new type of activity, all of these new experiences will contribute to making your vacation your best one yet.

Manage Any Work
If you are able to completely take time off from work whilst on vacation, then you should most definitely do so, and this means staying away from your work emails and messages the entire time you are away. If, however, some work whilst on vacation is unavoidable, then you need to be sure to manage your working time properly. Set yourself some limitations, such as responding to emails in the morning but then putting your phone or computer away for the rest of the day.

Have Fun
It goes without saying that fun is absolutely necessary in order to have your best vacation ever. Be sure to make time every day to relax in between all of your vacation adventures, socializing with others and sharing your experiences, whilst reflecting back on the past day. Having fun also means leaving the mundane tasks behind. If you don’t want to worry about having to find a babysitter, arrange for one in advance, or you could even bring a family member along on the promise that they act as a babysitter when needed. If you are renting a vacation house rather than staying at a hotel, it may be worth finding someone to cook and clean whilst you are staying there, so that you won’t need to worry about those things yourself.

Once you have had your best vacation ever, don’t forget to sort through all of your photographs and memorabilia, displaying the ones with the most sentiments behind them. While it may be hard-hitting to immediately get back to your everyday routine, these tips will ensure that every vacation you take will be even better than the last!