Is your brain as youthful as it could be?
Every living thing in this world cannot cheat the effects of aging and time and your brain too, is susceptible to losing its edge.
The fact is, your brain can start its decline as early as age 24. And there are many characteristics of losing the once powerful youthful brain.
Do you show signs of forgetfulness that constantly linger due to a fatiguing brain?
Do you find that the progression of one bad thing after another preventing you from being the happy, productive, or sociable and likable person you aspire to be.
Well, if your brain is not in optimal shape, you'll have difficulty finding contentment and functioning to your desired output. And a brain without steady, beneficial stimulation is a brain that will crumble and devour many different areas of your life.
And of course, you might've heard of meditation as a way to help calm the brain, or enjoying a book or movie to assist in "escaping" your mind, or simply eating a diet rich in brain-boosters like omega-3 fatty acids, vegetables, and spices like turmeric that helps improve brain function.
But what you may not have heard before is that physical exercise is the golden key to preserving your brain.
It's your first line of defense in preventive medicine that will help restore your brain's chemistry so that you're functioning effectively, your quality of life increases, and key areas of your life are enhanced to the max.
And here's how you can unlock all that"¦
1. Incorporate Intensity Workouts.
Anaerobic exercise is higher in intensity and shorter in duration than other forms of exercise.
It consists of short bursts of extraneous activity followed by a few minutes of rest "” as opposed to endurance-based workouts that are generally lower in intensity but longer in duration.
Think of sprints instead of jogging, or weight lifting instead of aerobics classes.
The brain works full time as the orchestrator in your body. And with the many responsibilities it holds, it's the correlation with the nervous system that makes anaerobic exercise special and vitally important in revamping your brain's chemicals back to optimal shape.
The nervous system holds tremendous value because it regulates neurotransmitters, and important one being serotonin.
Short workouts (anaerobic exercises) are great because they increase the secretion of this special neurotransmitter.
Serotonin is crucial because it is responsible for maintaining mood balance.
Consider it as your "happy" hormone, which is also associated with memory and learning.
So, a deficiency of serotonin leads to depression.
And here are some convincing reasons why it benefits brain health.
"¢ Help cases of insomnia.
"¢ Work wonders on giving instant relief of headaches. (It helps handle migraines too).
"¢ Reduce anxiety (which affects 1/3 of adults at one point in their lives).
You're gaining loads of psychological value with intense workouts.
And there's more to be said about it.
A nifty study from the American College of Sports Medicine discovered that weight training or other intense workouts helped ease stress and irritability in those who were diagnosed with an anxiety disorder.
Have you ever noticed how happy and emotionally resilient babies and children are?
They're always laughing, playing, and smiling. They rarely suffer from anxiety. When they're ready to sleep, they fall asleep.
On the other hand, depression, anxiety, and insomnia can all be symptoms of your brain's youthfulness beginning to fade "” so learn to boost it with intense workouts.
2. Start off by Stretching.
The next time you get a chance, take a look at cats after they wake from a restful sleep.
More often than not, their first activity is stretching.
They arch their backs and stretch their limbs.
Even our feline friends know that it's a great way to get the blood flowing faster than any river after a massive rainfall.
The same can be said with humans and stretching. You'll immediately feel a positive impact on how it regulates your brain's health.
The key benefit of stretching is the mental exercise and stimulation it provides your brain.
Stretching increases your circulation, along with the oxygen levels in your brain and muscles.
Although your brain is only 2% of your body's mass, it uses nearly 20% of the oxygen you breathe and circulate through stretching.
And get this "” the Alzheimer's Association discovered that stretching causes the hippocampus (your mind's memory bank) to grow and develop.
Participants in the study who stretched performed better on memory and thinking tests one year into the study than they had at its onset.
The fascinating thing about this is that stretching not only benefits your muscles, but it also benefits your neurological system, which includes the operation and development of the brain.
But how does it help me?
If you also suffer from forgetfulness, mental hiccups, or brain fog, stretching certainly helps brush those setbacks out the window; and it makes your brain that much sharper to help you get through a workday or accomplish any errands you otherwise might not have accomplished before.
Remember "” if you don't use you, you'll lose it. And that can't be any truer for your brain. If not exercised, it can fall victim to Alzheimer's.
You'll soon find that you'll boost your mental alertness and cognitive functions after incorporating daily rituals of stretching.
3. Heighten Your Out with Yoga.
You hear about it everywhere, everybody is reaping the benefits, or you may be practicing it or know someone who has joined the movement.
Yoga is certainly worth its weight in gold.
And it's known as a spiritual and ascetic disciplinary form of exercise.
It works closely with breath control and the adoption of specific bodily postures (techniques widely practiced for their health and relaxation benefits).
But interesting enough, yoga has a special connection to brain health.
Yoga advantageously uplifts your spiritual value, and its continuous art of breath control and body posture assists in raising your confidence levels too.
The process works by releasing tension from your brain and mind "“ tension not found in youthful brains of babies and children, thus their lack of depression and their emotional resilience and happiness.
So yoga can tweak your brain's chemistry, which in turn will allow you to feel more confident about your physical body.
4. Add Aerobic Exercise.
Another great alternative is aerobic exercise.
Also known as cardio, it is a physical form of low-intensity exercise that is geared toward endurance.
Examples of these exercises are (but not limited to):
As you read earlier about how anaerobic workouts trigger a pleasant serotonin release, aerobic exercise triggers a little something else.
Let's dig a little deeper"¦
Aerobic (endurance) workouts secrete endorphins.
And you might say to yourself, "Aren't endorphins and serotonin the same thing?"
On one hand, yes they are, as they generally produce the same form of pleasure in your brain.
But endorphins are a more intense form of pleasure, sparking such intense reactions as euphoria and ecstasy.
At low levels, these same endorphins can produce the mild effects of relaxation and joy, similar to those produced by serotonin.
The result is a youthful brain that is unflustered and unruffled "” which in turn shifts and recalibrates your attitude. This removes you from your fears, doubts, and negative thoughts of failure.
Become The "Better" Version Yourself
Your brain is the most complicated and amazing organ in the universe, so why wouldn't you try to change it for the better to become the best version of yourself?
Reclaim the youthfulness and competency of your brain, and watch your life transform for the better.