It’s been drilled into us that diet, exercise and a good night’s sleep are important for the health of our body and mind, but what else can we be doing to maintain cognitive health? According to research from Flordis, a natural healthcare brand, many of us know we need to look after our cognitive health, but we’re just not sure how to do it.
What is cognitive health?
Cognitive health is our ability to learn, think, recall memories and retain information. It’s our reasoning, judgement, planning concentration and focus, and general mental sharpness.
Why does it matter?
Less than a quarter of us tap into the full potential of our mind every day. And the majority of Australians (59 per cent) waste more than an hour on average each working day due to lack of focus or concentration – that’s approximately six hours a week gone and 12 days a year lost! Imagine what we could achieve if we all tapped into the full potential of our minds?
How can I love my mind?
We all have time to spare, with seven in 10 (68 per cent) of us admitting to having four or more hours each week of ‘downtime’, and almost half of this number (a third of the total population) have 10 or more hours.
By making some simple changes to our lifestyle and committing to nurturing our minds we can make a big impact on our overall cognitive health and make a greater difference to our quality of life as we age.
What should I invest in?
Now is the time to take an active approach to caring for your cognitive health, with simple habits you can implement every day.
- Eat more fruits, nuts, and vegetables – they’re positively associated with cognitive ability
- Get outdoors and see the sun! Vitamin D has been shown to help maintain a healthy mind as you age
- Learn a new language – this can help keep the mind sharp and efficient – and will come in handy on your next overseas escapade. Gelato anyone?
- Investigate a natural supplement – do your research first or chat to your pharmacist. One of the most researched formulations available contains an extract of Bacopa monnieri, referred to as CDRI 08 - shown in multiple clinical trials to help improve focus and concentration, memory and learning retention. Find out more
- Step-up at work and try taking on leadership role or hit the books and return to study to stretch your thinking
- Experience new cultures and interact with people of different age groups, or try volunteering. Doing this once a week can help decrease the risk of cognitive complaints
- Listen to your favourite songs to activate areas in your brain that are responsible for memory. Research shows learning can be improved by absorbing information through both visual and auditory channels
- Wine and coffee? Drinking red wine in moderation can help protect neurons! You also don’t need to put down that third cuppa – three to five cups of coffee a day has been shown to maintain a healthy brain (by 65 per cent)
- Doodle on a piece of paper – research shows that drawing while you listen to an instruction improves memory as it keeps the brain stimulated.
Our minds are amazing. But it takes a little bit of effort each day to keep them that way. How will you love your mind today?
For more information on how you can maintain your cognitive health, visit loveyourmind.com.au.
Available upon request.