As we get older, we often find that our minds and mental faculties are not as sharp as they once were. This can manifest in a wide variety of ways, such as taking a little longer to remember things, or being more forgetful in general. It may be that it seems more difficult to make decisions or to absorb information, particularly if that information is complicated and difficult to process – such as matters of finance, property or law. Whilst we can’t stop the clock of ageing that ticks in our minds as well as our bodies, we absolutely can take steps to keep our minds well oiled and fit for the future! ‘Mental Decline’, as it is sometimes called, is certainly not an inevitability…
Mental Activities: How great it would be to have both a youthful, sharp and honed mind as well as the wisdom that the experiences of life and aging bring? Surely though, one cannot have one’s cake and eat it – or can one? After all, why have a cake if you can’t eat it?
And to do so, we need mental stimulation, which is one of the best ways on how to keep the brain active. Mental stimulation can be achieved in many, many different ways and the level of stimulation is directly correlated to level of difficulty of the task or activity. Thinking burns calories with neurons firing within the brain, as you take on challenging tasks and activities such as the following:
- Crosswords, Wordsearches, Sudoku Puzzles, Haikus and more!
Each of our minds works in very different ways, and this determines which of the above four example activities may prove difficult or easy for you; the more the brain is challenged and mentally stimulated, the better the outcome. So, if you or an older loved one find crosswords a cakewalk, try Sudoku, or perhaps level up by trying to describe your day in a Haiku!
- Apps on your smartphone
These enable you to access activities related to ‘Brain Training’ or ‘Mental Workouts’ can be downloaded and , are a great way of keeping your brain fit.. You may be surprised at how many activities there will be to choose from!
‘Mens sana in Corpore Sano’ – A Healthy mind in a Healthy Body
There are many scientific reasons to believe that, in some way, what you consume directly affects the very definition of the physical you and this includes your brain Ensuring that the body gets the right nutrients, vitamins and minerals is very important as is keeping the body and mind fit and healthy – eg:
“[…] your diet defines you in trillions of ways” Ed Yong for National Geographic1
A fatty acid found in oily fish is vital for having a healthy brain! Eating oily fish just twice a week and substantially reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s. Consuming the fish itself may be better – but if you can’t stand fish, or have a plant-based diet, consider nutritional supplements rich in Omega-3!
- Exercise, cholesterol, blood pressure and BMI.
All of these health indicators have an impact on mental acuity. The axiom of ‘healthy body, healthy mind’ rings very true here.
If you or your loved one are not on an exercise regime at the moment – talk to your GP and discuss the best options available.!
Paxton Hall Care Home staff are very well trained in elderly care and are cognisant of the importance of good and wholesome nutrition and of keeping the residents mentally and physically active and stimulated. Find out more about what we can do for you and/or your loved ones by clicking here!
 https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/phenomena/2010/08/03/you-are-what-you-eat-how-your-diet-defines-you-in-trillions-of-ways/ | Retrieved 08/12/19