Stay Mentally Active

The human brain, just like any other human organ, needs specific nutrients in order to function properly. Brain impulses and memory storage requires calories, especially sugars in the form of complex carbohydrates. When a person skips meals and overeats on simple carbohydrates like sweets and sodas can cause low blood sugar, leading to exhaustion, confusion, irritability and depression. Hence it’s important to know the important brain nutrients.

Amino acids

Amino acids are the basic building blocks of proteins, and are instrumental in building the various proteins used in the development of various body tissues. Amino acids, in particular, support metabolism in brain cells and help rid the brain of waste products.

Popular amino acids:

  • phenylalanine and tyrosine – keeps an individual alert and energetic.
  • glutathione – minimizes environmental chemical stress.
  • taurine – stabilizes cell membranes to prevent mineral loss.

Vitamins and minerals

Besides amino acids, vitamins and minerals are needed for the smooth flow of nerve signals through the brain. Antioxidants like vitamins A, C and E help to eliminate free radicals in the brain, and B vitamins help maintain normal brain metabolism.

Fatty acids

The brain is made largely of fat, an essential fatty acids are also essential for healthy brain function. However, since fatty acids cannot be produced by the body, they must come from two good outside sources: omega-3 fatty acids and mono-unsaturates. Many kinds of commercial fish are rich in omega-3 while certain fruits such as olives and avocado are rich in mono-unsaturates.

Keeping a healthy brain

Keeping a healthy brain also includes positive habits and practices that can be incorporated into an individual’s lifestyle. Below are some of the best ways:

Do mental exercises – These are challenging but not stress-inducing activities. Reading popular fiction, solving puzzles and brainteasers, learning to play the guitar, getting active in light sports, and learning new skills are just some activities that can be done.

Maintain healthy habits – These include taking alcohol only moderately, avoiding smoking and cutting down on caffeine-heavy products such as chocolates and colas, as well as avoiding substance abuse.

Avoid isolation – Avoid becoming lonely. Loneliness creates a void that can actually result in brain deterioration. An individual can be alone but still enjoy the company of friends and acquaintances, but one can also be lonely even in the midst of a big group of people.

Think in advance – Keeping in mind future challenges that one will face helps one prepare early for those challenges. It also considerably minimizes the pressures brought about by stress and depression.

Meditation – Regular meditation can reduce stress, anxiety and depression. A simple technique is to sit quietly from ten to twenty minutes and thinking of nothing or concentrating on the flow of one’s breath.

Think positive – The mind is like a sponge; it absorbs anything that enters it. Set a goal to absorb only positive thoughts and ideas for seven days. If a negative thought enters, the loss can be fixed by adding an extra day to the goal. It’s a simple exercise, but it eventually creates a powerful habit.