Memory loss can happen naturally with age due to the fact that, as we grow older, there is a gradual loss of brain cells. Many times, it’s entirely out of our control. However, there are ways that you can help to fight memory loss before it occurs or to prevent it from getting worse. By being proactive and making some lifestyle changes, you can better maintain your cognitive wellness. Following are three ways to combat the symptoms of memory loss.
1. Exercise Your Mind
By continuously stimulating your brain, you’re using your brain cells, which helps prevent them from loss. This is why it’s important to use your mind and challenge yourself mentally. Some easy (and fun!) ways to exercise your mind include playing games and completing crossword puzzles. Watching trivia shows like Jeopardy! or game shows like Wheel of Fortune can also help you keep your mind active. Reading books, especially those that are historical or more of a challenge, can help too. If you’re able to, taking any sort of educational class will keep your brain agile as well.
2. Keep Your Body Active
There is a positive correlation between physical exercise and better mental function. This can be because of improved circulation throughout your body. Even just going for a walk each day can make a difference. Plus, the fresh air, along with nature itself, is good for you. Reducing stress can also help fight memory loss, and a good way to reduce stress is by keeping your body active. Meditation or yoga are great practices to incorporate into your lifestyle if you can.
3. Eat the Right Foods
A diet that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants can help to fight memory loss. Fruits and vegetables hold a lot of antioxidants. For a fun treat, dark chocolate and tea are good sources too. Foods like walnuts, cold-water fish, and flaxseed are high in omega-3s. A Mediterranean diet is extremely beneficial, as it helps to control midlife hypertension, which can help to reduce the risk of cognitive decline. It’s also important to avoid alcohol, as alcohol can have a damaging effect on brain cells.
Whether you have begun to show signs of memory loss or you have not yet, these three lifestyle changes are helpful to incorporate into your daily routine. They will assist in preventing memory loss from occurring, or if you have already begun to notice a decline in cognitive ability, they will help to slow the process.
Additionally, as social isolation can be a risk factor for dementia, staying social and engaged with your family and community will help to keep your mind as well as your body active.
At the Mission at Agua Fria, our activities and dedicated care help fight memory loss at all stages of our residents’ lives. If you or a loved one has recently progressed to where assistance is needed, give us a call. We’re happy to discuss quality memory care with you and how it can support the whole family.