How To Improve Your Memory At Any Age With 10 Simple Steps

Can’t remember things the way you used to?

And you wonder—what can you do to improve your memory!

You remember. It started out slowly. Initially you ignored it. But after several episodes of forgeting things you took notice.

At first you looked for obvious reasons. You remembered that when you where stressed or had a sleepless night you were not always at your best. For example, at times you had trouble finding the right word or missplacing your keys.

You even mentioned it to your doctor during your annual exam. After a thorough examination you felt anxious about the results.

While relived to hear the doctor say that everything was ok, you left the office with mixed feelings.

All you really heard was this little statement:

“It’s part of getting older”

Moreover, with each new incident you became more and more frustrated.

Our brain change as we age

Your body changes as you age. Some of the changes are noticeable like wrinkles and gray hair, while others are more subtble like the changes happening in our brains.

The normal aging process includes:

1. Cognitive Changes

2. Structural Changes

3. Neural Changes

4. Chemical Changes

What’s normal and what’s not

Normal AgingAlzheimer’s Disease
Making a bad decision once in a whileMaking poor judgments and decisions a lot of the time
Missing a monthly paymentProblems taking care of monthly bills
Forgetting which day it is and remembering it laterLosing track of the date or time of year
Sometimes forgetting which word to useTrouble having a conversation
Losing things from time to timeMisplacing things often and being unable to find them

Source: nia.nih.gov

Improve your memory with these simple steps:

1. Change your diet

Research suggests that omega-3 fatty acids and an anti-inflammatory diet can enhance memory. Your diet affects all aspects of your body. Alter your diet and you alter your ability to store and retrieve memories. There are several versions of anti-inflammatory diets. Experiment and see which works best for you.

2. Manage stress

Stress is hard on your body, brain, and memory. Stress has been linked to decreases in memory. Set reasonable expectations for your life. Learn how to relax and avoid stress. Ensure that you’re getting enough leisure time.

3. Get enough sleep

Scientists are still working hard to fully understand  about what happens while we sleep, but it has been established that our brains don’t work as well when we’ve been deprived of sleep. One late night on the town will prove this fact to anyone. Get enough sleep and your memory will be enhanced. * Stick to a regular sleep schedule. * Avoid caffeine. * Try taking a nap for a middle of the day pick-me-up.

4. Use repetition

It’s much more effective to expose yourself to something repeatedly than to attempt to learn it in one sitting. If you’re trying to learn anything new, like a new language, six 5-minute sessions will be more beneficial than one 30-minute session. The popular flash card program, Anki, uses spaced repetition to aid memory.

5. Keep your mind active

Do something each day that requires a lot of brain activity. Reading, crossword puzzles, chess, and various brain teasers are effective at keeping your mind active and sharp. Avoid relying on just a single activity. Mix it up and hit your brain from every angle.

6. Be creative

Creativity uses different parts of the brain than the more analytical functions we typically perform. Paint, draw, learn an instrument, or write. Anything requiring creativity can be useful.

7. Move

Moving blood through your body and brain can boost memory. Obesity can lead to blood sugar and circulatory issues. Both can impair memory. You don’t have to pretend you’re training for a triathlon, but get your heart pumping for a few minutes each day.

8. Write it down

This is nothing new, but, in our digital world, many people moved away from the practice of handwriting. Moreover, many of us omitted taking notes and relied on auditory or visual input solely to remember things. However, if you want to enhance your memory writing things down is a highly recommended habit to cultivate. Recent Research shows the importance connection between handwriting, specifically cursive, and brain learning and remembering in a digitalized world. An added benefit—you always have something to fall back to in case you did forget.

9. Say it aloud

Use all of your senses. Say it so that you can hear it. If you write it, read it aloud, and imagine it, it will be much easier to remember. Expose yourself to the information you wish to remember in a variety of ways.

10. Maintain healthy relationships

Some memory experts believe that relationships are the key to keeping your brain healthy and active. It has been discovered that those with the busiest social lives have the slowest declines in memory.
•Spend more time with family and friends.
•Make some new friends or join a club.
•Volunteer.

11. Don’t drink a lot of alcohol

Alcohol spells double trouble for the brain because it accelerates the aging process.  A 2018 study provides important information about the effects of aging and alcohol on the brain. 

Furthermore, alcohol consumption is on the increase. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, “Currently, 26 percent of men and 30 percent of women in the United States are age 55 or older, compared with 21 percent of men and 24 percent of women 10 years ago. Experts estimate that by 2050, nearly 1 in 5 people in the United States will be age 65 or older, compared with 1 in 7 now.

How to improve your memory summary

Even if you believe you’ve been plagued with a poor memory, it can be enhanced. Eat an anti-inflammatory diet, minimize stress, challenge your brain on a regular basis, and get enough sleep are a few of the steps that can be taken to improve memory function.

Most importantly, remember, it’s never too late to pay attention to your memory.

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