A New Year’s Resolution to Focus on Brain Health
It’s that time of year. Have you decided on your New Year’s resolution? As always, focusing on health and wellness seem to top everyone’s list, so while you’re working to improve your core strength don’t forget about this important muscle—the brain!
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in 10 people age 65 and older has Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. There are a variety of studies showing you can slow the process of memory loss, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease by maintaining your brain’s health.
As the largest and most complex organ in the human body, your brain could use some TLC too. Consider these four areas of focus to maintain and enhance cognitive wellness:
LEARN something new. Take a cooking class, art class or computer class. Learn a foreign language or musical instrument. Or, continue your education through a community college, university or senior community.
Stay SOCIALLY ENGAGED with family, friends, and community. If your health permits, then offer to baby-sit your grandchildren or younger loved ones. Take trips with family or friends. Get together for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Volunteer at an animal shelter, community center or other organization you would enjoy.
Maintain PHYSICAL WELLNESS. Caring for your brain means caring for your body. Stay physically active by taking tai chi or yoga classes, or joining a walking group. Many senior communities offer free wellness classes that are open to the public.
There are lots of independent ACTIVITIES you could do to enhance your brainpower too. Examples include meditating, reading a good book, dancing, writing, building models, woodworking, photography, embroidery, crossword puzzles, card games, brainteasers, and other memory games.
It’s also important to note that a healthy diet and proper rest and relaxation can also improve your mental well-being. And, remember these activities should be pleasurable, not stressful! Be sure to maintain regular visits with your doctor and discuss any memory or behavioral changes you are experiencing. Staying well both physically and mentally translates to a longer, healthier life!