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10 Ways to Help Boost Your Memory

10 Ways to Help Boost Your Memory

There is an adage that teaches “you can’t teach old dogs new tricks.” However, the human brain has a fantastic ability to adapt and change at whatever age you are. It was believed that the brain function peaked during adulthood then gradually declined as we age, leading to memory lapses. Now it is known that the modern lifestyle contributes significantly to the cognitive decline. A poor diet, exposure to toxins, stress, lack of sleep and many little and ignored factors are some of the examples of an unhealthy lifestyle. The flip side also holds true in that a healthy lifestyle will support your brain health and can even encourage the brain to grow new neurons. A strong memory depends on the vitality and health of the brain. There are lots of tasks you can do to improve the strength of your mind, and therefore, your memory.

Adopt healthy eating diets and habits

The types of food that you eat and also the ones that you ignore play a crucial role in improving and maintaining memory. A diverse diet consisting mainly fruits, vegetables and healthy fats are essential and will do the brain a lot of good. Increase your Animal-based omega-3 fat intake and avoid sugar and carbohydrates.

Give your brain a workout

Regularly exercising your brain maintains its growth and can even spur development of new nerve connections that will help improve memory. Exercise encourages the brain to work at an optimum level by stimulating nerve cells to multiply, thus strengthening their interconnections and protecting them from damage. Memory, like muscular strength, requires you to exercise it for the best functioning. The more you use your brain, the better you’ll be able to process and grasp information. Challenge your brain with puzzles and games and try new challenging tasks that will make you flex your brain muscles.

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Physical Exercises

Mental exercise is essential for brain health, but also so is physical activity. Exercising helps the brain to stay fit and sharp. It increases oxygen circulation to the brain and reduces risks for disorders that lead to memory loss, such as diabetes. Exercising reduces stress to both the body and brain. It also plays a significant role in growth and stimulating new neuronal connections.

Get adequate sleep

The number of minimum hours required to sleep varies depending on age and activity. Sleep impacts directly on learning and memory. Sleep is essential for memory consolidation, with the key memory-enhancing activity occurring during the deepest stages of sleep.

Avoid Stress

Stress is part of life and cannot always be avoided due to the world’s overwhelming demands. However, stress has severe effects on the brain and body. Chronic stress makes you emotional and forgetful as it kills brain cells. You can try stress-reducing activities such as exercise, relaxation and hobbies. These will reduce stress and help your brain to be sharper and increase your ability to remember things.

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Stop multitasking

Multitasking is the ability to do a number of activities simultaneously. Multitasking slows you down, makes you prone to errors and more forgetful. If you are doing multiple things at the same time, the brain finds it difficult to choose which information to store and which to ignore.

Use of these supplements

Much has been made about the use of supplements to improve memory. And none is better than Nu Skin’s BioGinkgo. BioGinkgo is an extract from the leaves of the Ginkgo biloba, and it helps to improve memory, concentration and overall circulation of blood to the brain, arms, and legs. It also reduces cases of absent mindedness. One tablet a day with a meal should do the trick and help you improve your memory.

Master and try out a new skill

Think of something new that you have always wanted to learn, say skating or playing the guitar or even speaking a different language. These activities stimulate the neurological system, counter the effects of stress, reduce the risks of dementia and enhance the brain’s health. They help improve your memory, so long as they keep you engaged and challenged.

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Laugh

They say that laughter is the best medicine, and indeed, it is. A good laugh engages multiple regions in the brain and activates areas of the brain vital to learning, memory, and creativity. Hop on Netflix to find a comedy or read a good funny book and get chuckling.

Use mnemonic devices

Mnemonic devices are memory tools that help you to remember information and concepts. They help organize information into a format that is easier to remember, such as the use of acronyms, rhymes, visualization and breaking information into smaller chunks for easier remembrance.

If you are serious about improving memory and cognitive function, the above ten techniques will offer a cheap and easy-to-do solution.

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Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory/Man Feeling Happy Outside via stokpic.com

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Last Updated on August 15, 2018

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

Video Summary

Why is it important to train up our core strength?

There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

One Exercise, multiple benefits

There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

What will happen when you start doing planks every day

    1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

    Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

    • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
    • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
    • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
    • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

    2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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      Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

      Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

      3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

        Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

        4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

          Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

          A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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          A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

          On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

          5. You’ll improve overall balance

            Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

            6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

              Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

              7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                How to hold a plank position

                1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                  How to improve your plank time gradually

                  1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                  2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                  3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                  Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                  Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                  You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                  • Prolapse
                  • After prolapse surgery
                  • Pelvic pain conditions
                  • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                  • Previous childbirth
                  • Overweight

                  Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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