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Use Public Transportation to Save Your Sanity and Increase Productivity

Use Public Transportation to Save Your Sanity and Increase Productivity
Photo by Lingaraj G J, used under a Creative Commons license.
    Photo by Lingaraj G J, used under a Creative Commons license.

    Ask any number of people what they value in life and you’ll probably find time, money and peace of mind somewhere at the top of their priorities.

    Yet so many of us seem willing to forfeit large amounts of these things for the supposed ease and comfort derived from our beloved cars, even if they do eat away at our finances, drive us headlong into never-ending, stress-causing traffic and suck away at our time.

    Fear not though my friends, there is an alternative, and it’s name is public transport.

    It sounds simple, but leaving the car behind and taking public transport could save you more than you think.

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    Save your money

    Besides the thousands you’ll initially splash out on the car itself, with tax, insurance, repairs and all that money we spend on fuel factored in, that vehicle costs us more than a pretty penny.

    Add up all those expenses and work out how much your car really costs you over the course of a year. Then compare that with how much it would cost you to travel by public transport. If the latter works out cheaper, what are you waiting for?

    The money you save could be invested in your long-term goals or simply saved up for a rainy day.

    Save your time

    Unless you’re David Hasslehoff in Knight Rider, once you’re driving your hands and mind are fully occupied.

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    On public transport however, your time is your own. You could spend your journey reading that business management book you recently purchased, write down ideas for your next big project, put together the day’s to-do list or even get your e-mail dealt with before hitting the office.

    Whatever it is you decide to do, it’s surely better than being a slave to your steering wheel for the entire journey.

    Save your sanity

    Ever found yourself hunched over the steering wheel on a hot day, your heart racing, breath quickening and mind succumbing to rage and madness as an immobile sludge of traffic surrounds you from all sides and leaves you stuck in gridlock, going nowhere fast?

    Try taking the bus instead.

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    The belligerent traffic still won’t budge, but now you have your favorite music playing on your iPod and you’re either so engrossed in that new book you’ve been dying to read, busy jotting down some great ideas for that big project of yours or taking care of any number of other things that you hardly notice the chaos beyond the bus.

    All is good, you’re calm, and you arrive at your destination completely stress free and ready for a productive day.

    Which one sounds better?

    Save yourself

    When you drive to work, the amount of exercise you get is minimal; a few steps from the front door to the car, then a few more from the car to your place of work.

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    When you take public transport on the other hand, it practically forces you to add a bit more exercise into your life as you walk (or hey, why not jog a little?) to catch the bus or train, then again once you jump off and head to work. If you’re struggling to fit exercise into your lifestyle, this is a quick and easy way to add activity into your daily routine.

    Save the world

    Our final point is probably the most obvious, but it’s still worth mentioning.

    It doesn’t take an eco-genius to figure out that the more cars there are on the road, the more emissions there are pumping junk into the atmosphere, increasing pollution and bringing the world one step closer to an untimely demise.

    By leaving yours in the garage and taking public transport, you’re doing your part in bringing that pollution down and ultimately saving the world.

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    Chris Skoyles

    Coach, and trainee counsellor specializing in mental health and addiction.

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    Last Updated on August 12, 2019

    12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

    12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

    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 and brain power:

    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.

    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.

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    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.

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

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    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 About Boosting Brain Power

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

    Reference

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