“Memories, pressed between the pages of my mind Memories, sweetened thru the ages just like wine.” ~ Elivs Presley
Where to Begin?
The topics of memory loss prevention, the ability to improve quality of life, or even help reverse symptoms experienced with cognitive decline is profound, with many avenues to explore.
This article will address critical aspects like “what are some things I can do at home to help have a healthy mind/brain” and “where can I go for help?”
Memory and Cognition
The Mind and Body cannot be separated when it comes to the discussion of memory and cognition.
Elvis, The King, gives us great insight in his song “Memories” about how powerful the mind can be and how important memories are for us.
In society, cognitive decline or increased memory issues are often accepted as the norm and “just a part of aging.”
At Tiger Medical Institute Institute, we believe that the status quo for aging does not have to include significant cognitive decline.
Tiger Medical always takes an incredibly individualized approach to each of our clients, especially when it comes to memory care (as there are at least 36 different factors that can contribute to cognitive decline).
Testing and Imaging
Getting metrics surrounding those 36 different contributors to cognitive decline is essential.
There are three critical areas of evaluation to consider regarding this topic:
- Cognitive Screening - To assess how the brain is functioning.
- Imaging - Looking at functional changes from SPECT Scan and when indicated, it can be helpful to look at structural changes with an MRI.
- Lab Testing - A variation of tests ranging from blood work, spit tests, stool samples, and even genetic testing provides essential context for overall health and underlying contributors to cognitive decline.
Now that you have a baseline and understanding of where you may be, numerous essential lifestyle factors must be considered.
Unfortunately, there is no magic solution for memory loss, but there are things you can do at home to live a life that is healthy for your brain and mind.
Walking, biking, and strength/resistance training \are essential to keeping the mind and body healthy.
Quality sleep is essential for memory consolidation. Aim for 7+ hours and keep consistent sleep and wake times.
3. Cognitive Stimulation
It seems as if we know people who have been mentally sharp their entire life, and as soon as they retire and stop doing anything, their sharpness rapidly declines.
Keeping the brain active with things like reading, sudoku, volunteering, learning a new language, chess, and checkers is vital.
Gardening, sports, and reading to an elementary school a few times each week are great hobbies to partake in!
This goes in hand with number 3, but being able to learn new things will challenge the mind and create new neural pathways.
New hobbies like dancing, painting, pottery, etc., are all great examples. Also, learning new ways to move and exercise, like trying boxing, fencing, swimming, pickleball, and squash, are additionally good options to try.
What you eat is vital to your brain’s functioning.
Plant-dense and healthy fat-filled diets with low carbohydrate intake and moderate protein have been shown to be beneficial for your brain’s health.
7. Reducing Stress
Stressed can be done by the following exercises: diaphragmatic breathing, leisurely walks in nature, yoga, and meditation.
While the above tips are helpful, it is important to know you’re not alone in keeping your brain healthy and sharp.
The medical system has failed many in this area. We encourage you to seek your physician’s advice about lifestyle changes to help in these areas and find a physician who has been trained to find the underlying root causes of cognitive decline.
For example, Tiger Medical Institute is a certified cognitive disease prevention clinic by Dr. Dale Bredesen. We would be happy to talk more about how we may assist in these areas of life.
Strengthen Your Mind & Improve Memory
Cognitive decline is not experienced overnight but can be a slow process over decades.
Testing at different times in your life can provide important metrics for baselines and can be valuable in identifying an issue.
Adjusting or maintaining certain lifestyle factors will be some of the most valuable aspects of keeping a healthy brain and mind. Tiger Medical Institute can help you along this journey of memory loss prevention, and we are happy to talk more when you are ready.