How can I improve my brain health
Spoke to Dr. Marc Milstein today. He wrote "the Age-Proof Brain". It's about making lifestyle changes (based on heavy research) that reduces the risk of demential and also can result in cognitive increases among older people.
1. Sleep, Move, Eat, Learn
2. Learn at least one new thing a day.
Exercise that muscle.
You gut has as many neurons as your brain has. The gut and the brain are in constant communication. the neruons in the gut are influenced by your gut bacteria which is influenced by what you eat. too many sugars, fried food, etc creates bad bacteria that messed with the messages sent to the brain.
Apparently you need "Omega 3" (Salmon) and a list of other foods he mentions in his book. This food helps the brain create the myelin that is used to create long-term memories.
the brain creates a lot of trash every day. At night the brain is squeezed and all that trash oozes out and is flushed away. This "washing" of plaque (the type of plaque that accumulates when you have Alzheimers) takes about 90 minutes and happens several times a night.
So sleep is important but apparently if it you sleep through artificial means it can have the reverse effect.
SO the basics (mentioned in other lists by @braincoach ):
- eat 3-4 hours before you sleep
- no screen time a few hours before sleep
- dark as possible in the room
- no phone in the room when you sleep.
The result: extra years of high quality cognitive ability when you are older.
5. Exercise / Yoga
Not only does exercise increase energy but also the management of movement and balance (yoga) is a critical part of the brain's functioning so must be exercised.
Heart health is critical for brain health.
Have gum disease? This creates a chronic simmering infammation. inflatmmation int he teeth effects the rest of the body, particularly the heart and the brain. People will gingivitis have worse memories and higher risk of dementia later in life.
8. Look at the sun 15 mins to a half hour after you get up
This sets the "clock" so you can sleep well the next night,
9. Anxiety, Stress, Depression
These mental health conditions increase the risk of dementia. Use natural tools if possible, or manage these health issues in some way to reduce that risk and increase your memory.
10. These practices help improve cognitive function even if you are not at risk of dementia
11. And, of course, fecal transplants.
But that's for another list.