Dodge memory loss
Follow these techniques to improve your memory and reduce memory loss
An important brain function that plays a role in reducing mental ageing is our memory.
When it comes to memory, most of us can be forgiven for getting the jitters when we have bouts of forgetfulness. These events don’t necessarily mean we‘re a candidate for Alzheimer’s disease, though. The good news is that a lot of memory loss as a result of ageing (known as age related memory loss) is treatable and reversible. Regardless of your age, you are quite capable of training your brain and undertaking new learning to produce new brain cells as well as reverse memory loss.
There are three types of memory loss. The first is known as normal forgetfulness and includes minor events such as forgetting where we put our car keys, not remembering people’s names or forgetting why we entered a room. The second type of memory loss is known as mild cognitive impairment (MCI) which involves memory loss that is more severe than mere forgetfulness, like blanking on your child’s birthday, missing a regular (weekly) appointment or not being able to recall something you’ve just read a few minutes ago. The third type of memory loss is the result of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia which are so severe that the loss affects your ability to work, engage in hobbies or social interaction, or participate in family relationships. I recommend that, if you have reason to believe your memory loss is more serious than normal forgetfulness, you consult a medical practitioner for a full assessment and appropriate treatment.
How to improve memory
It’s encouraging to know that if we do not have a more serious reason for memory loss, we can do a lot to regain our former memory capacity.
One of the most important memory enhancers is oxygen and the two most effective ways to oxygenate your brain are regular exercise and breathing more efficiently. Exercise is good for a number of reasons, but when we view its benefits through the lenses of memory loss, we see that it reduces the risk of diseases that contribute to memory loss, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Engage in some form of physical activity that causes you to breathe heavily (and, no, sex isn’t enough for this!). Also, simply focus on breathing more effectively by filling your lungs more and expelling more air when you breathe. It’s quite an exhilarating feeling! Another memory enhancer is a healthy diet which includes nutraceutical supplements to provide nutrients our modern day foods do not contain. Supplements are often demonised by many doctors who believe they are not necessary if one eats a healthy diet. Unfortunately, it would appear that the food generally available in retail food outlets just does not have the nutritional value our bodies require for what may be classified as a “healthy diet”. Also, we’re told that we need to eat about five vegetables and five fruits a day, but that’s not as practical as it sounds. It’s also too costly for some.
Supplements are just what they’re called – nutrients that supplement what our food is not able to provide. So don’t be fooled by the, “If you take supplements, you’re just making expensive urine,” brigade. Supplements work. I have it on good medical authority from the anti-ageing doctors I work with and from personal experience. I can actually feel a physical difference when I stop taking certain supplements. Of course, you get good supplements and less effective supplements. It’s therefore important to do your homework to find supplements that will be beneficial for you.
The third of the regular/obvious memory enhancers is not smoking. This is a sensitive subject (for smokers), but it would be irresponsible of me not to tag smoking as a massive ageing agent apart from it being a killer. It increases the risk of vascular disorders which lead to stroke and it reduces the oxygen supply to the brain by constricting the arteries that deliver oxygen to the brain. Enough said. If your memory is becoming a problem and you’re a smoker, you may wish to make a life changing decision to cease smoking. That’s another whole subject, but there are some very supportive services and products which can help you achieve this goal. You owe it to yourself and your loved ones to kick the habit.