4 Ways to Help Improve Your Memory
We live in a fast-paced, hectic world in which remembering details can sometimes be difficult. And when you add the demands of the holiday season with travel arrangements, busy social calendars and exhaustive shopping lists, your memory can be affected.
Recent studies suggest that adopting a few simple lifestyle changes can help preserve your memory. If you are struggling to remember everything on your holiday to-do list, try these four tips.
1. Strength train for 20 minutes
Georgia Tech researchers found that brief but intense workouts that incorporate weights, resistance equipment or body weight exercises (e.g., pushups, squats and planks) can improve long-term memory. Experts theorize that the body’s response to stress and release of certain hormones help us remember. Continue reading about how lifting weights can help improve memory.
2. Add cauliflower and raspberries to your holiday meals
Cauliflower is a good source of choline, a vitamin-like nutrient that has various functions including helping maintain memory. Cauliflower can easily fit into a holiday menu as either part of a crudités platter or as a side dish at dinner.
Raspberries also contain choline, as well as flavonoids, plant-based nutrients that help improve memory and delay age-related cognitive decline. Other festive fruits that can help your memory and contribute to brain health include blueberries, blackberries and apples.
3. Maintain your blood sugar level
Although monitoring your sugar intake is easier said than done, particularly during the dessert-laden holiday season, studies suggest it is quite important. Researchers have found that spikes in blood sugar from eating sweets can interfere with memory.
In addition, having elevated blood sugar levels on a regular basis is a sign of diabetes and can damage blood vessels, reducing blood and nutrient flow to brain cells and ultimately contribute to age-related memory loss, as well as Alzheimer's disease. Help keep your blood sugar under control by having a snack or meal every three hours that combines a lean protein with a complex carbohydrate. Here are some suggestions:
- 1 cup of whole grain cereal with low fat milk
- 1 ounce of almonds with an apple
- A small pita pocket with 2 ounces of light tuna
4. Get seven to eight hours of sleep each night
While it is not news that a lack of sleep can impair your memory, researchers from the University of California-Irvine and Michigan State University recently found a connection between sleep deprivation and a distortion of memories. Try these eight tips to help you sleep better.