Natural Ways to Improve Your Memory
Do you sometimes forget where you put your glasses and waste an inordinate amount of time looking for them? Our brain cells are supposed to help us remember where we’ve been, where we’ve put things and names associated with the faces of people we meet.
Unfortunately, our brain cells can let us down by losing the ability to communicate properly. There are certain strategies that we can incorporate to “train” our minds – such as paying closer attention to what we’re doing at all times or repeating information (a name, for example) over and over until we’ve got it memorized.
Our diets may be the cause of not being able to remember even the most mundane information. Memory boosters in the form of dietary supplements can help fill in those nutrients that we’re not getting in our diets and help drive out memory loss.
These boosters are sometimes called “smart nutrients” and can be found at your local health food store. Below are some of the smart nutrients that work best to restore your memory:
• Choline and DMAE (Dinethylaminoethanol) – These nutrients are the building blocks of the brain. Fish, eggs, liver, soy, peanuts (and other types of nuts) are especially high in choline. DMAE is also found in fish and helps your concentration ability.
• Acetyl-L-Carnitine and Glutamine - When you combine these nutrients, you’ll have an antioxidant that acts as an energy booster for the brain, plus a memory advocate that can balance the all-important neurotransmitters, necessary for enhanced memory performance.
• Ginkgo (Ginkgo Biloba) – Also acts as an antioxidant for the brain, improves circulation, boosts energy, memory and concentration.
• Vitamins and Minerals – There is a variety of vitamins and mineral supplements that you can take to increase your memory skills. These include all B vitamins and minerals, which contain niacin, folic acid and pyridoxine. Vitamin B12 is especially helpful in building nerve cells that help us with mental alertness.
Most of us would like to have better concentration and remembering skills. But most of us practice a diet lacking in the nutrients we need. Do your own research to find out which nutrients you may be missing and try supplements for awhile to jump-start your brain cells.
Exercises That Are Good for Your Brain
In today’s world of computers, television, magazines and newspapers all spewing out information to us and overloading our brains, it’s no wonder that we have trouble remembering things. It’s sometimes difficult for us to concentrate on the task at hand because of bells, whistles and other modern noisemakers.
We’re also under pressure to multi-task – and tax our brains by going from one job to another and expecting to do them all perfectly. It would be easier if we didn’t have so many outside distractions, but with cell phone and other interruptions, no distraction is a thing of the past.
Our brains, just like the rest of us, can be trained to respond faster and more effectively when called upon and to remember things more easily. Since our brains are comprised of about 90% water, it’s imperative that we hydrate them regularly and often by drinking lots of water -- especially during stressful situations.
Sometimes, memory loss and lack of ability to concentrate is blamed on aging, but if the brain is challenged on a regular basis it remains strong. The brain can be challenged or exercised in many different ways, including puzzles (crosswords and Sudoku), games and reading.
Memory loss and lack of concentration is sometimes due to a new medication’s side effects. Be sure and check with your pharmacist or health professional about any prescriptions you take that might be the cause of memory problems.
Diet and physical exercise is also important when fighting memory loss. Eat a diet that’s healthy, including lots of fruits, fish (and lots of protein) and vegetables. Keeping in shape will also help to keep your brain in working order.
Try something new – like taking a class at the local college or taking up a sport such as golf. Your brain will react by expanding its ability to concentrate and to take on new projects. You’ll also feel proud of yourself and in better spirits if you succeed in learning something new.
Suffering from memory loss can be annoying and sometimes devastating, depending on how severe the symptoms are. If you notice that your memory loss is more abrupt than gradual, see a health professional to get tests that will determine if you’re suffering from a medical problem such as Alzheimer’s or another type of degenerative disease. If you’re suffering from severe memory loss, it’s important to get a diagnosis as soon as possible.
Foods That Are Good for Your Mind
There are “feel good” foods that are exceptionally good for your mind and your body. Whether you’re a college student facing finals week or a senior citizen concerned about memory loss and lack of concentration, you’ll benefit from knowing which foods to eat that will give you a memory boost.
Foods that are good for your mind usually contain “tryptophan,” a chemical that controls the all-important serotonin levels in the brain. Some foods that contain tryptophan are soy products, fowl, pineapples, eggs, cheese milk and avocados. Some bread, potatoes and cereals also have tryptophan.
Chocolate bars and drinks with caffeine may give you a temporary boost, but will cause your body and your brain to become imbalanced. Another chemical, Thiamine (Vitamin B1), promotes healthy brain cells and will also promote balance.
Folic acid, found in foods such as oranges, lemons and bananas help your brain to function healthfully and the mineral, Zinc, promotes concentration as well as keeping your immune system healthy. Zinc can be found in red meat, peanuts and oysters. Omega-3 fatty acids contained in fish (especially salmon) is a great “brain food.”
It’s best not to eat saturated fats contained in many fried foods and fatty meats such as bacon. They alter the neurotransmitters in your brain and can clog your arteries. Too many saturated fats, combined with an unhealthy diet and lifestyle can also cause obesity and an early death because of stroke or diabetes.
A diet rich in the following foods can be healthy for your brain as well as your body:
• Soybeans – Soy provides fiber, fats and proteins.
• Nuts – Contain monounsaturated fats that keep your arteries clear and your mind infused with serotonin.
• Tomatoes – Lycopene and folate, good for the arteries, are found in tomatoes.
• Dark Chocolate – Real chocolate increases artery cleansing flavonoid and also releases dopamine which provides a sense of well-being.
• Oils – Olive, flaxseed, fish, avocado and nut oils all contain monounsaturated fats.
Eating a mind-boosting diet can also benefit your body. If your diet doesn’t contain enough of the vitamins and minerals you need, supplements are readily available.Want additional ideas for useful alternative health practices?
Check out:Alternative Health Practices GuideEnergy Healing Practices GuideNatural Herbal Remedies GuideWhat are your thoughts about this?
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Cheers, Helene Malmsio