Strengthen Your Brain as You Do Your Body
By Donna Stark
We all know that if we aren't physically active, and don't use our muscles regularly, they will begin to atrophy, or waste away. This can often be seen when a disease or injury makes it difficult to move and is why so many doctors prefer to have their patients start physical therapy after surgery as soon as possible. They want their patients to gain strength and to maintain healthy muscle function, and as important as it is to do that for your arms and legs, it's equally as important to strengthen your brain in a similar way as well. Because even though, anatomically, the brain isn't a muscle, you should definitely treat it like one so that it doesn't atrophy. And how do you do that? Well, you work it. And you work it every day.
Therapy for Your Brain
As we age, our brain's cognitive abilities begin to slow down and unfortunately, many of us can end up with diminished function or memory loss. But just as a healthy lifestyle and physical activity keep our bodies lean and strong, a brain-healthy lifestyle and mental exercises can keep our minds functioning at an optimal level. Studies have shown that the best way to keep your brain healthy is to put it to work with real-world activities. Here are some suggestions.
- Choose a puzzle-of-the-day - Puzzles and word or number games are a great way to keep your mind sharp. Try to do one every day.
- Test your memorization - Make a list of things, such as what you need to buy at the grocery store, and then memorize it. Test yourself after some time has passed to see how many items you can recall.
- Play an instrument - Sign up for music lessons and learn how to play an instrument. Learning something new and reading music is one of those perfect brain exercises.
- Do it old-school - I know you remember what it was like to do math without using a calculator app on your phone, so go back in time and grab that pencil! Or better yet, use only your brain!
- Take a cooking class - Cooking is great for improving your cognitive skills because it involves the different senses which activate different parts of your brain.
- Learn a new language - A rich vocabulary can help reduce the risk of cognitive decline, so in addition to the word-of-the-day calendar sitting on your counter, try to learn a new language as well! It's a great way to stimulate the mind and the perfect reason to travel.
Healthy Brain for a Healthy Future
Don't delay ... it's time to strengthen your brain and improve its overall health and wellness! So grab those puzzles, buy that apron, or do anything else that will encourage your brain to work! After all, a healthy brain is just what the doctor ordered for a healthy future!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Newtown Square, Pa.