Everyone sometimes experiences moments of amnesia, especially when life becomes complicated.
While this is entirely normal to happen, having a bad memory can be deeply annoying.
Genetics can be influential on memory loss, particularly in serious neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease. However, studies have proven that diet and lifestyle have a significant impact on memory as well.
Here are 14 natural options to boost your memory that are supported by research.
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Too much sugar in your intake has been linked to a variety of health problems. High sugar consumption is also linked to chronic diseases, including cognitive decline.
A sugar-laden diet has been associated with impaired memory and decreased brain volume, particularly in the area of the brain that stores short-term memory.
For example, one study of over 4,000 people discovered that those who drank more sugary beverages, such as soda, had reduced brain volumes and weaker memories on average than those who had less sugar.
Reducing your sugar intake improves not only your memory but also your overall health.
Fish oil is rich in high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, such as EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).
These fatty acids are beneficial to general health because they have been shown to reduce the risk of heart condition, decrease inflammation, absolve stress and anxiety, and slow mental dysfunction.
Many doctors recommend eating fish and taking fish oil supplements to improve memory, especially in the elderly. One study found that taking concentrated fish oil supplements for 12 months significantly improved short-term and working memory scores in older adults with cognitive decline.
One other review of 28 studies indicates that when adults with minor signs of memory loss took supplements high in DHA and EPA, such as fish oil, their episodic memory improved.
Both DHA and EPA are essential for brain health and performance, as well as helping to decrease inflammation, which has been connected to cognitive decline.
Meditation can benefit your health in a variety of ways. It is calming and relaxing. It decreases stress and pain, lowers blood pressure, and even enhances memory.
Meditation has the capability to boost gray matter in the brain. Neuron cell bodies are found in gray matter. Gray matter decreases with age, which has a negative effect on memory and cognition.
Meditation techniques have been proven to strengthen short-term memory in people of all ages, from young adults to the elderly.
For instance, one study found that Taiwanese college students who practiced meditation, such as mindful awareness, significantly improved spatial working memory than students who did meditate. Working memory refers to retaining and processing information about objects in space.
Keeping your body weight is crucial for overall well-being. It is considered one of the most effective ways to keep your body and mind in top shape.
Overweightness can result in changes in memory-associated genetics in the brain, thereby impairing memory.
Obesity can also cause insulin resistance and inflammation, both of which are harmful to the brain.
Research with 50 participants aged 18 to 35 discovered that having a higher BMI was related to significantly worse scores on memory tests.
In addition to obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, a progressive disease that destroys memory and cognitive ability, is also linked to overweight.
For a long time, inadequate sleep has been linked to poor memory. Sleep is essential for memory consolidation, which is the process by which short-term memories are boosted and changed into long-term memories.
According to research, sleep deprivation can have a negative impact on memory. One study, for instance, examined the impact of sleep on 40 children aged 10 to 14.
One group of children was given training in the evening for memory tests, then tested the next morning after a night’s sleep. The second group was trained and evaluated on the same day, without any rest in between. The group that got a chance to sleep between training and testing outperformed the control group by 20% on the memory tests.
Another study discovered that nurses who work late and at night shifts made more mathematical mistakes and got lower scores on memory tests than nurses who work the day shift. Adults should get between seven and nine hours of sleep per night, according to health experts.
Mindfulness is a mental state. At this state, you concentrate on your current situation while staying aware of your surroundings and emotions.
Mindfulness is used in meditation, although the two are not synonymous. Mindfulness is a mental habit that can be used in any situation. On the other hand, meditation is a more formal practice. Mindfulness has proven itself to be effective at decreasing stress and enhancing concentration and memory.
One study of 293 psychology students found that those who received mindfulness training outperformed those who did not. This success in performance was specified in terms of recognition-memory performance when recalling objects.
A study has also shown that mindfulness reduces the risk of cognitive decline related to aging and increases mental health.
You should include mindfulness methods into your everyday routine by paying more attention to your current situation, focusing on your breathing, and gently resetting your attention when you become distracted.
Consuming too many alcoholic beverages can harm your health in a variety of ways, including a negative effect on your memory.
Binge drinking is defined as a form of drinking that results in blood alcohol levels of 0.08 grams per ml or higher. According to research, it alters the brain and causes memory deficits. A study of 155 college freshmen students discovered that students who drank six or more drinks in a short period of time performed worse on immediate and delayed memory-recall tests than students who never committed to binge drinking.
The influence of alcohol on the brain is neurotoxic. In addition, recurring binge drinking can harm a part of the brain that is important for memory, known as the hippocampus.
While having a drink or two from time to time is perfectly healthy, avoiding excessive alcohol consumption is a clever way of protecting your memory.
Playing brain-stimulating games to exercise your cognitive skills is a fun and effective way to improve your memory. Games, including crossword puzzles, word-recall games, Tetris, and even memory-training mobile apps are fantastic ways to improve memory.
A study of 42 adults with memory loss discovered that playing games on a brain-training app for eight hours per week for four weeks enhanced performance in memory tests.
In another study, 4,715 participants who participated in a 15-minute brain-training program every day for five days a week showed that it significantly improved their short-term memory, working memory, concentration, and problem-solving skills. Furthermore, brain-training games have been shown to lower the risk of dementia in the elderly.
Having plenty of refined carbohydrates, such as cakes, cereal, cookies, white rice, and white bread, can be bad for your memory.
Foods containing carbohydrates have a high glycemic index, which means that the body digests them quickly, resulting in a climax in blood sugar levels.
According to research, the Western diet, which is high in refined carbohydrates, is linked to dementia, cognitive decline, and reduced cognitive function.
According to one study participating 317 healthy children, children who had more processed carbs such as white rice, noodles, and fast food had lower cognitive capacity, including poorer short-term and working memory. Another study found that adults who ate ready-to-eat breakfast cereal on a daily basis had lower cognitive function than those who ate cereal less.
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that serves many functions in the body. However, low levels of vitamin D have been related to a variety of health problems, including a decline in cognitive function.
The researchers examined the blood vitamin D levels of 318 older people over the course of five years and found that those with blood vitamin D levels of fewer than 20 nanograms per ml lost their memory and other kinds of cognitive skills more rapidly than those with normal vitamin D levels.
Lower levels of vitamin D have also been associated with a higher risk of developing dementia. Vitamin-D deficiency is extremely common, particularly in colder climates and among people with darker skin. Consult your doctor about getting a blood test to determine if you require a vitamin D supplement.
Exercise is beneficial to both physical and mental health. Doctors highly recommend working out since it is good for the brain and may help improve memory in people from childhood to adulthood.
During A study of 144 people ages 19 to 93, scientists discovered that 15 minutes of moderate exercise on a stationary bike enhanced cognitive performance, including memory.
Many studies have shown that exercising can increase the release of neuroprotective proteins and strengthen neuron growth and development, resulting in better brain health.
Working out regularly in middle age is also linked to a lower risk of developing dementia later in life.
A healthy diet of nutrients high in anti-inflammatory foods may help you improve your memory.
Antioxidants aid in the reduction of inflammation in the body by lowering oxidative stress caused by free radicals. Foods such as fruits, vegetables, and teas typically have antioxidants.
A meta-analysis of nine studies involving over 31,000 people discovered that those who had more fruits and vegetables experienced a lower risk of cognitive dysfunction than those who ate a lower portion of these nutritious foods.
For example, berries are rich in antioxidants such as flavonoids and anthocyanins. As a result, eating them may be a great way to avoid memory loss. According to one study of over 16,000 women, people who ate more berries (such as blueberries and strawberries) had slower rates of cognitive decline and memory loss than those who ate fewer berries.
A compound named Curcumin is found in abundance in turmeric roots. It comes from a class of compounds known as polyphenols. This is a high-power antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties in the body.
Curcumin has been shown in animal studies to reduce oxidative damage and inflammation in the brain, as well as the number of amyloid plaques. These bind to neurons and cause cell and tissue death, resulting in memory loss.
In fact, amyloid plaque accumulation may contribute to the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Curcumin may enhance memory and prevent cognitive decline in animals. However, human studies are still needed to determine its effects on memory.
Cocoa is really delicious and also nutritious, containing a high concentration of antioxidants known as flavonoids. According to research, flavonoids are incredibly useful to the brain. They may help the stimulation process of the growth of blood vessels and neurons, as well as increase blood circulation in memory-related areas of the brain.
A study conducted on 30 healthy people discovered that those who ate dark chocolate with 720 mg of cocoa flavonoids had a better memory than those who ate white chocolate without cocoa flavonoids.
To receive the most benefits from chocolate, select dark chocolate with a cocoa content of 70% cacao or higher. This will help to ensure that it contains more antioxidants, such as flavonoids.
There are numerous enjoyable, simple, and even tasty ways of improving your memory. Exercising your mind and body, enjoying a good piece of chocolate, and decreasing the amount of extra sugar in your diet are all great ways to improve your health. Try including a few of these science-backed tips into your daily routine to improve your brain health and memory.
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