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5 Things You Accomplished On A Lazy Day

5 Things You Accomplished On A Lazy Day

If you’re feeling bad about spending a day being lazy, don’t! You accomplished more than you intended when you skipped the gym, didn’t catch up on any work and saved cleaning the house for Monday. That’s right, sleeping, eating junk food and watching TV all bring health benefits. Here are five of them:

1. If you took a nap, you strengthened memories and reduced inflammation and stress.

The benefits of sleep are clear. It’s while sleeping that you sharpen your mind and practice skills learned while you were awake. Sleep restores alertness: improving concentration and decreasing the chance of mistakes when you are awake. In contrast, lack of sleep has been linked to depression, anxiety, increased weight, weakened immune system and an increased risk of heart disease.

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So go ahead and get some shuteye. For best results, the experts recommend keeping your nap to about 20 minutes. Any longer can leave you tossing and turning when it’s time to go to bed at night.

2. If you listened to music on your lazy day, you decreased anxiety.

In a study, listening to music before surgery lessened patients’ anxiety more than prescription medication. Music has also been linked to lower levels of cortisol, which is known to contribute to a thick midsection, so turn up the tunes and break out the skinny jeans.

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3. If you ate ice cream, you strengthened bones and teeth.

When you tucked into that ice cream, you got a serving of calcium, protein, and vitamins A, D and K. Regular calcium consumption has been proven to ward off osteoporosis. Studies have linked calcium intake to reduced weight and weight gain prevention. Lack of calcium, on the other hand, causes fat cells to store fat and enlarge.

To make your ice cream indulgence even healthier, choose low-fat, soft-serve or sherbet and top your sundae with fresh fruit for antioxidants and vitamin C. Try to stop before you’ve consumed the whole container. Recommended serving size is half a cup.

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4. If you caught up on your favorite comedies, you relaxed your entire body.

Laughter has been shown to relieve tension, reduce stress and relax muscles. Additionally, laughing has been linked to increased immunity and lower risk of heart disease. It really is the best medicine!

Laughter can be considered a light workout. A study at Vanderbilt University found that adults burn 1.3 calories per minute on average when laughing. It’s not as much as you would burn on a treadmill, but it’s more than you would burn sitting still. Should you choose a sad movie over The Daily Show, you can expect to burn about the same amount by crying. No word on how many calories you burn yelling at the TV while watching your team.

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To make TV watching even healthier, channel surf with friends. Laughing strengthens relationships and attracts others.

5. If you called a friend, you might have lengthened your life.

Studies show good friends are good for your life. Your social network can help you recover from cancer and other major illnesses – even more than family, according to a study. Friends can also help ward off colds and cardiovascular disease. Buddies help you feel connected, boost self-confidence and help you cope with life’s setbacks. It’s been said that friends are the family we choose, and it’s nice to be chosen. Friendships teach loyalty, honesty, trust and all the other traits we value in fellow humans.

Your pals can also encourage you to live a healthier lifestyle. A little healthy competition leads to making healthier choices. Consider clipping on a pedometer and challenging your BFF. You can celebrate your success with ice cream while watching your favorite show together. Then go home and take a nap.

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5 Things You Accomplished On A Lazy Day

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Last Updated on February 21, 2019

12 Best Brain Foods That Improve Memory and Boost Brain Power

12 Best Brain Foods That Improve Memory and Boost Brain Power

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate:

15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

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B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

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It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and black tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here:

11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

More Resources About Boosting Brain Power

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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