How to improve your Lifestyle?

We typically ignore the brain health that has equal importance as physical health. It is very essential that we live a healthy lifestyle to improve our brain health because if our brain processes everything effectively and efficiently, we feel good. This book is highly recommended to people who constantly struggle to balance their emotional and physical health. I chose this book to improve my brain health because especially this pandemic is driving me crazy. Adding these tips to your lifestyle will improve your brain health too and will keep you sane.

This book proposes the CAPE (Cognitive Strategies, Activity Engagement, Prevention of Cognitive problems, Education about the brain) model for brain health. There are too many effective tips to implement on this brain model. For instance, this book talks about the effective strategies that can boost the cognitive part of our brain. We can use calendars or sticky notes to remember our daily tasks. That’s what I do and find it very effective. I feel that it not only helps me to remember but also creates a trigger in my brain to manage the task on time. if you don’t already do this, you must give it a try and you will see a positive change! This book also talks about multitasking that it is a good thing but it is better if we try to complete one task at a time before moving onto something else. Have you focused on all your movements when doing a common chore like washing dishes? We mostly just want to get the chore done and don’t live the moment. But try this exercise when you do any chore like cleaning, washing or any activity, try to get involved and feel every single moment like the way you are moving your hands or running water on the dishes. Feel every bit of it!

This book emphasizes exercise in great detail. Exercise can lead to great cognitive benefits if done properly and in routine for at least 20 to 30 minutes per day.  The writer also talks about social interaction. This is a pretty interesting fact and we might all know that ” The larger your social network, the better your brain tends to work, and the lower your risk of dementia”. Loneliness is the biggest influence on our brain health. One great way to improve social interaction is to involve in some sort of social work such as try volunteering at your local community. It has wonderful positive effects on the brain. There are some games and hobbies that can also stimulate brain health like reading, crossword puzzles, playing a musical instrument, photography, drawing, etc. Food is also an important aspect that we can’t ignore. This book mentions the Mediterranean diet (MeDi) that reduces the risk of cognitive decline. Also, it mentions that berries, fish, olive oil, nuts, and leafy vegetables are good for brain health. We should avoid high saturated fat, red meat, and processed food. Another important aspect to improve brain health is to sleep well. We all know that 7 to 8 hours of sleep is ideal to improve the brain. But do you know that sleeping less than 6 hours or more than 9 hours can lead to cognitive problems? There are tips to improve your sleep like avoiding caffeine later in the day, avoiding TV in bed, and so on. An interesting fact is that afternoon naps for less than 30 minutes can temporarily boost up cognitive abilities. We all are little or more stressed in these COVID tough times which is affecting our brain health. Stress can affect the hippocampus of our brain to cause memory problems and affect negatively to our functioning. Meditation and exercise are the answer. Then there come physical health problems which have a huge influence on our brain. Diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, smoking, etc. are all bad for our brain health.

We can improve our health by engaging ourselves in good hobbies and activities that can lead to a good lifestyle. Studies show that it takes at least 5 weeks for habits to become routine and about 66 days to maintain it so consistency is the key. What I like about this book that it is written in very user-friendly language and all the scientific terms can easily be understood. This book also has questions or assessments by the end of each chapter that helps to make yourself a goal to work on that. There is also a ‘BOTTOM LINE’ bullet points by end of each chapter to make it easy for you to remember and implement effective strategies. This book has so many important points and effective strategies. You will not regret reading this!

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