9 Best Exercises for Improving Brain Health
Are you interested in improving your brain health, for as long as it is possible? Do you want to enjoy the best cognitive function and handle complex tasks regardless of your age? If you have provided an affirmative answer to either one of these questions, do not hesitate to keep on reading. In the paragraphs below, you will be able to discover some of the best exercises for improving the health of your brain. Performed on a regular basis, these will help you enjoy a good quality of life, with a reduced risk of cognitive decline and other similar problems.
- Memory test
When it comes to improving memory, there is one very simple exercise that you can try. You can begin by writing down a list – it can be anything you want, including favourite movies, music or even groceries. Spend as much time as you need memorizing it and set it aside. After approximately an hour, take a sheet of paper and see how many of the items on that list you can recall. This is indeed one of the easiest and yet most effective ways of stimulating your brain and keeping it healthy.
Whether you decide to learn how to play a musical instrument or you want to become part of a musical choir, you cannot even begin to imagine how beneficial this can be for the health of your brain. Music has been known to have positive effects with regard to the cognitive functioning, is often recommended, during recovery, to those who have suffered from brain injuries and memory loss. Moreover, as you will learn something new, healthy synapses are going to form at the level of the brain.
- New sport
As it was already mentioned above, your brain benefits tremendously from learning something new. This is especially true in the situation you decide to take up a new sport. It can be anything you want, as long as you are drawn to it and you do not feel tempted to quit. Physical exercise is known to be beneficial for both physical and mental health, is often included in the depression treatment plan. Practicing a new sport is even better, as it poses an interesting challenge to the brain and the body.
- Mathematical calculations
We have grown so accustomed to using technology that we have forgotten how to perform simple mathematical calculations. Well, when we perform math in our head, our brain gets some great exercise. You can challenge yourself by increasing the complexity of the mathematical calculations; or, if you want, you can try walking and doing math at the same time. The physical activity, combined with the mental effort, is going to keep your brain alert and fit.
- Cooking class
If you have always wanted to learn how to cook, there is no better time than the present. By taking such a class, you will have the opportunity to learn how to cook new dishes or perhaps an entirely new cuisine. Your brain will be quite stimulated by the new challenge, not to mention by the incredible diversity of flavors, textures, and colors. Keep in mind that cooking is a process that requires all of our senses to be used; when these are active, so is the brain, which means that it stays healthy and that cognitive decline is kept at a safe distance.
- Foreign language
What better exercise for the brain, other than learning a foreign language? When we learn something new, especially words and phrases in another language, our brain is stimulated to perfection. The areas in the brain which are responsible for the learning process light up and we end up feeling better and more relaxed. Moreover, when one learns a foreign language, the risk of cognitive decline becomes considerably lower.
- Word pictures
If you like a good challenge, then you should definitely give word pictures a try. What you want to do is take any word and spell it in your head; it can be any kind of word, with as many letters as you feel like it. The challenge will be to come as many words as you possibly can, which begin and end with the same letters. Such exercises are meant to keep your brain alert and functioning, especially in older age. The more the brain is trained, the lower the risk of neurodegenerative conditions appearing.
- Letter exercise
As you probably know, the brain is quite easily stimulated by exercises that involve words. The letter exercise can be fun and be challenging at the same time. What you want to do is take several letters, which ones you want (but make sure vowels are included) and write them down on a sheet of paper. Then, put your mind to good use and try to form as many words with these, as it is possible. The letter exercise will challenge your brain, helping new synapses to form.
- Tasting game
If you have ever watched cooking shows, you have probably seen those challenges contestants have to go through. Well, an exciting challenge is when the contestant keeps his/her eyes closed and he/she must guess different ingredients. You can play this game in your own kitchen, asking your partner to place different ingredients, herbs and spices in front of you (while you keep your eyes closed). This will challenge your brain and it will allow you to have some fun at the same time.
These are some of the best exercises you can resort to, in order to improve the health of your brain. As you have seen, the brain can benefit from both physical and mental training. The most important thing is that you challenge yourself on a daily basis, as this will keep the brain alert and in an excellent state of health. These exercises become even more important as you age, as the risk of neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease increases significantly.