10 steps to a better brain | TheUnion.com

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10 steps to a better brain

It’s common to experience a little brain fog as we age, but much like muscles, the more exercise you give your brain, the stronger it will be. These simple lifestyle tips can keep your brain young for years:

Give your mind a workout. Practice brain games, crossword puzzles and memory exercises that stress verbal skills

Bite into brain foods. Enrich your diet with plenty of omega-3 fats, low-glycemic index carbohydrates (e.g., whole grains) and antioxidants. And consider eating several smaller meals throughout the day.

Keep your body fit. Take brisk walks each day and do stretching exercises. Increased cardio can make your brain actually grow, with more white matter and more neuron connections.

Manage your stress levels. Stretching and relaxation exercises help keep anxiety in check. Stress causes the body to release cortisol, and cortisol has been found to shrink the memory centers in the brain, which results in impaired memory.

Check your iron. Iron helps the neurotransmitters essential to memory function properly—and your body may be sensitive to low amounts. In one study, women low in iron missed twice as many memory questions as women with adequate levels.

— Courtesy of MSN Health