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12 Tips for Improving Brain Function

 Even before the invention of computers, we had a very powerful tool for calculating, planning and performing complex tasks of various kinds. This is, of course, the brain, which is the computer of the body and is responsible for the regulation of a variety of important processes in its various organs, and of course it’s also responsible for emotional and practical thinking.

 

Because it has so many roles, it is very important that we take care to perform actions that will maintain its proper functioning over time and prevent damage to it. The following 12 tips may sound unusual, but they will help keep your brain sharp for a long time so you can enjoy robust health of the most vital organ in your body.

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1. Try aromatherapy

There is nothing like the intoxicating aroma of essential oils to improve our mood, and it turns out that these extracts can also help improve our brain function. Rosemary oil, for example, helps to clear your mind from thoughts and maintain clarity of mind, and other oils such as mint and basil reduce mental fatigue and increase our concentration. To take advantage of these oils, special tools can be used to disperse them in the air or they can be applied directly to the skin after being diluted.

2. Conduct a brief brainstorming session

It's no secret that to keep a clear head you just have to think, but to make the most of it you have to do it right. One of the best things you can do to increase your creativity and brain function is to brainstorm briefly with yourself or with other people. Raise different ideas, vary the words you use, and discover the thoughts that come to mind at any given moment. This will help you a lot when you have to do different writing jobs or simply when you want to keep yourself sharp.

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3. Maintain a regular bacterial balance in the gut

It is not for nothing that the digestive system is called the "second brain" of the body since it is connected to the brain directly by the vagus nerve. The various bacteria in the stomach emit substances that transmit messages to the brain and vice versa so that there is a close connection between these two organs. This causes what happens in the stomach to have a significant effect on the brain and its function, especially when it comes to bacterial balance.

In cases where this delicate balance is disturbed and "bad bacteria" proliferate in the digestive system, they emit harmful substances that reach the brain through the vagus nerve and may be harmful to it. To prevent such a situation, it is important to maintain a balanced diet and try to avoid foods with artificial substances as much as possible, and those that you know are not beneficial to your health.

4. Minimize the use of navigation software

Many people are now used to getting into the vehicle and running their favorite navigation software to get help reaching their destination, which can be a short distance away. However, it turns out that this action may affect our brain function adversely and cause damage to our spatial memory. In a study published in 2011, researchers found that among taxi drivers in London who participated in the experiment, the use of maps instead of navigation devices increased the function of the part of their brain related to spatial memory and even changed its structure. So the next time you go on a trip, consider taking a paper map and training your brain to get the best out of it.

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5. Maintain oral hygiene

Aside from the fact that brushing your teeth protects them from cavities, gingivitis and unpleasant breath, it can also help you improve your brain function. The reason for this is very simple and is due to the fact that plaque deposits formed between the teeth if not treated properly cause a chain reaction that ultimately prevents the arteries from transferring essential nutrients to the brain. As a result, the brain doesn’t get all the materials it needs and its activity may slowly fade because of it. To improve your brain function and make sure that your body's most important organ gets all it needs, keep your mouth clean and try to prevent food from getting stuck between your teeth.

6. Take short breaks during the day

When we "load" our brain with innumerable tasks during the day, we can damage it and even cause it to lose its function. It is sometimes difficult to avoid considering the hectic lifestyle many of us have, but if you want to improve your brain function, take occasional breaks. Try to take short timeouts, even for just a few minutes, from what you’re doing and fill this time with light activity like surfing the web or even relaxing and having a cup of coffee. This will allow your brain to shift gears from time to time and over time its function will improve, allowing you to perform tasks more easily.

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7. Use coconut oil

When our brain does not get the nutrients it needs, a condition sometimes caused by a diet that is deficient or low in carbohydrates, degenerative processes can occur that damage its function. To prevent this condition, our body breaks down fats in a process whose products are particles called ketones - triglycerides with medium chains. These particles become the nutrients of the brain, which in a study at the Institute for Medical Research of Nutrition, Brain, and Trauma in Washington found that they greatly increased brain activity.

This does not mean, of course, that in order to motivate our bodies to produce more ketones, we need to switch to poor nutrition, but only to add these particles to our daily diet, for example by using coconut oil that contains a lot of them. Consumption of about 20 grams each day can do wonders for the brain and improve its activity considerably.

8. Try to practice yoga

The benefits of yoga exercises and their positive effect on mood and relaxation are known to most of us, but it turns out that these unique movements also have a significant effect on brain function. This is due to the fact that certain movements performed in this exercise increase the blood supply to the brain, thereby sharpening memory and contributing significantly to the health of the vital organ in our bodies.

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9. Do not forget to go out to the sun often

Even if you get plenty of sun exposure you may still be vitamin D deficient! Each person needs a different amount of this essential vitamin meaning that each of us should stay outside for a certain period of time. This is particularly important because vitamin D is needed for proper functioning of the brain, and if there is a deficiency in the body, it can cause damage. On the other hand, a sufficient amount of this solar vitamin improves brain activity and even slows the aging of the body’s "computer”, so try to go out and spend time in the sun often to improve your brain function.

 

10. Think of your ancestors

Many may wonder what this phrase means, but there is no hidden meaning here. A study published in 2010 found that subjects who thought of their ancestors and their family heritage performed better on cognitive tests than those who did not. The researchers believe that a thought that focuses on family lineage and storyline increases a sense of control, which makes us think more clearly and function better. So if you want to improve your brain activity, try to think about your family often, it’ll only help you.

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11. Lie with your head down

There is nothing like going to bed at the end of a long day to rest and let our bodies and minds relax. The next time you do this, try lying down for a few minutes in a way that will cause your head to drop down, for example by lying on the edge of the bed. In a study conducted at the School of Psychology in Australia, researchers found that subjects who practiced this way of lying solved puzzles better than those who lay normally. The reason for this is that when resting in this position, more blood and oxygen reach the brain and improve its functioning, and this action also has a positive effect on memory.

12. Think more positively

This sounds a little trite, but the key to a healthy mental and physical life is to think positively. Not only will this make you feel better, but your brain function will also improve. Behind this statement lies a scientific explanation: when we enter a negative mood and feel bad, our body releases chemicals and hormones that cause the destruction of brain cells. Conversely, when we learn to regulate our anger and negative emotions, our brain rewires itself and makes us more relaxed. So, to strengthen your brain power, try to be positive.

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The brain is an amazing organ, with new things being discovered about it all the time, such as actions that can be done to improve its functioning. Doing the 12 things mentioned above will help you slow the cognitive aging process, help keep your mind sharp and improve memory over time.

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