5 Habits that Damage your Brain
Self-help books, media, tv shows – on a daily basis we receive wellness and health tips for different areas.
Shouldn´t we give the 46 ounces of nerve cells the same level of attention we give the rest of our bodies?
Your brain will love the following tips:
1. Use salt sparingly
I do not want to be the bearer of bad news again after recommending to remove sugar from your diet but sodium is another “bad guy” that needs some attention.
JAMA Neurology published a study that came to the conclusion that sodium is one of the factors that promotes high blood pressure. Studies prove without a doubt that sodium is a major contributor to high blood pressure.
A high blood pressure will increase the susceptibility for cognitive decline.
On average the mental decline caused by high blood pressure was rather small but high blood pressure also increases the likelihood of suffering a stroke. Most of the time a stroke causes severe brain damage.
2. Get enough sleep
Slowly, we are starting to understand the full impact of sufficient sleep on our brain health.
How important recuperative and recreative sleep is, clearly shows when we did not sleep enough. Irritability and concentration problems are obvious consequences, but a lack of sleep also affects our memory.
In addition to that, a lack of sleep has negative long-term consequences. While we sleep our brain removes degradation products. If the length of sleep is not sufficient, these degradation products can lead to inflammatory processes that impact the brain health negatively.
3. Protect your hearing
Our ears are one of the organs that suffer most from environmental changes. A few generations ago, church bells were probably the loudest sound. Nowadays our ears are exposed to constant background noises and loud sounds.
From the noise in a club, headsets to traffic noise – our ears hardly get a break. The number of people with hearing impairment is on the rise.
A study of the John Hopkins University showed that hearing impaired people have a 30 – 40 % higher chance to suffer cognitive declines.
Therefore, it is recommended to protect your ears as much as you can. Meditation also is a great form of treating your body and mind to silence.
4. Mind your weight
Did you know that healthy weight is a big contributor to your brain health?
In 2012 Neurology (a leading specialist magazine) published a long-term study. 6000 participants, on average 50 years old, have been examined for their cognitive functions. 10 years later the participants have been examined again.
Overweight participants showed a 22 % larger decline in cognitive abilities than participants with normal weight.
5. Maintain friendships