Lifestyle Changes for a Healthier Brain

Mental illness is a serious problem that needs not to be ignored. There are ways to diagnose if you have one by carefully looking at the symptoms of the condition. If you find yourself having one, the two things you will do include visiting a therapist and taking medications. What is often ignored is the changes you can make in your lifestyle. Research studies have found out that doing so can be equally beneficial.

It is not just about suffering from any mental condition. If you suffer from mood disruptions, excessive stress, this technique can still be adopted. Lifestyle changes help keep the body in shape and allow the mind to function properly. Thereby, it is important to be able to do so for the sustenance of vital bodily systems.

For certain, making big changes in your routine can be demanding in terms of time and financial restriction. This is understandable. However, you do not always have to make big changes in order to achieve your goal. Even, small, meaningful steps in the right direction will allow you to remain physically and mentally fit.

This article will look into some of the everyday lifestyle changes you should make. It is important to note that doing this will help you remain healthy. Yet it is not a substitute for any medications you might be taking for any serious medical complication. It is surely a way of preventing a number of illnesses but is not a direct cure to them.

Amend your diet

Needless to say, what you eat has a great effect on your mental capability. At some point, you might have heard someone saying the following. “What is good for your heart is always good for your brain as well.” This statement happens to be considered accurate and thereby it is pertinent to acknowledge it.

There are some food items which are beneficial for you and some which are not. Research has revealed that whole foods have plenty of benefits to offer. These whole foods include green leafy vegetables and fruits, red meat and seafood. All of these items contain essential nutrients which the body is in need of. By receiving these nutrients, you are able to help the brain perform its function properly. A list of nutrients you will find in these items are mentioned as follows.

  1. Magnesium
  2. Zinc
  3. Folate
  4. Iron
  5. Fatty Acids

On a more interesting note, there are other everyday items (or snacks) which have hidden benefits. Dark Chocolate tops the list containing polyphenol which also helps in optimizing brain function.

Thereby, as a mandatory thing to do, make necessary amendments in your diet. Always know what is good for your heart because that is also good for your brain.

Get up & move

Start moving if you have not already. Lying in bed or sitting on the couch all day have consequences which you might not be aware of.  To understand it in an easier way, if you do not move much, then you put yourself at risk of obesity. Obesity, in turn, leads to further complications of which disrupted brain function is one.

There is an exhaustive list of physical exercise you can perform. There is no restriction for sticking just to one or two. Yet, it goes without saying that certain activities do help you burn more calories than others. Particular emphasis needs to be made towards swimming. While swimming can be demanding for people, the benefits outweigh the difficulties. It is an all body exercise. Yes, by all body, it means that it is good for your brain as well. Swimming takes away the stress that you have piled up for the entire day. It makes you feel refreshed, revitalized and calm.

In addition, always aim for work that requires moving. Even when you want to interact with friends, meet them at a park. Socialize while walking!

A number of people complain that is difficult for them to find time to walk. Especially when they are too involved in their work at the office. In that case, try taking walking breaks in the middle. If you happen to be sitting for 2 hours straight, take two 10-minutes walking break in the middle. For an 8 or 9 hours working shift, that makes eight or nine walking breaks. Which means that you have walked for 80/90 minutes. That is sufficient to keep you fit.

Say NO to bad activities

One unfortunate reality is, that to manage stress, a lot of people will resort towards vices. Meaning by, as a stress coping mechanism they will tend to make drinking/smoking a habit. This can be commonly observed in young people who will mostly do so out of strong peer pressure.

Stress can be difficult at times especially when you have numerous other things piled up in your plate. It can be managed through various means, but drinking/smoking should not be one. Simple enough, it is a bad habit with far other consequences. What really happens when you do so is that these vices become a habit. Now every time you are stressed out, you will resort towards smoking or drinking. You might get a temporary relief but your body, in turn, is suffering from other side effects.

At one point, it becomes an everyday thing to do. Even when you are not stressed, you find yourself doing all of these things. The problem becomes serious when you find it difficult to leave because you are now addicted! When you try on quitting, your body suffers from withdrawal symptoms.

Thereby, in order to save yourself from all this hassle, say no to smoking and drinking. Do not create a vicious cycle of bad coping mechanisms. Surround yourself with good people so they never pressurize you in the first place.

Do not compromise on sleep

Prioritize rest and sleep. It is understandable that the workload of everyday life makes it difficult to carry out certain activities. People will tend to compromise on sleep and rest in order to complete whatsoever they have piled up. Do not do this!

There are numerous ways to improve your quality of life by adjusting your sleep pattern. If you suffer from frequent insomnia, then follow the sleep hygiene techniques. The number one thing to do in that regard is to cut down food items that make you suffer from this problem. This includes reducing the intake of caffeine.

Always execute a plan that you will tend to follow every day. The plan should include the necessary eight hours of sleep that you have to get whatsoever. Go to bed early and try getting up early as well. People who tend to sleep during the morning and stay up all night are far more likely to suffer from mental illnesses.

Areeba Hussain

Areeba is an independent medical and healthcare writer. For the last three years, she is writing for Tophealthjournal. Her prime areas of interest are diseases, medicine, treatments, and alternative therapies. Twitter @Areeba94789300

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