5 Ways for Adults to Improve Brain Function
When we leave school, our minds are no longer exercised in the same way. We start to develop routines and can often let the brain stop working for us by getting used to well, what we’re used to. The brain actually has the capacity to remain intact if we understand how to work with it as we mature.
From herbs to yoga to brain exercises, there are a lot of studies proving we can increase cognitive function. This whole area of study is a part of the biohacking community of intellectually curious juggernauts who want us to continue to tap into our potential at any age.
Also, it’s possible that even in our later years, we can get our brain to function better than it did when we were young whippersnappers. I can’t believe I just said, whippersnappers! I know someone who struggled throughout school, got mediocre grades, followed by a matching mediocre job he didn’t like.
He started studying how to improve brain function, applied the knowledge, and got into Mensa by increasing his brain function to be considered at a genius level. (Those in Mensa are considered to have the top 1-2% of IQ.) He also received a full scholarship to Berkeley.
Can each of us improve our brain’s capacity and memory? Absolutely. Here are 5 simple ways to start today.
This is a plant known to help treat cognitive disorders and improve the functioning of your brain. You’ll have to find it online because we scoured health food stores looking for it on the shelves, but it’s more well known in Japanese medicine. It helps in 3 main ways.
- It has high levels of resveratrol, which prevents degeneration of the brain’s capacities as we mature
- It helps remove toxins from our body which improves clarity
- It helps strengthen our nervous system
Schizandra is another great plant that is known to help brain function and you can easily find it in supplement aisles.
#2 - Do Inversions to Increase Circulation to Your Brain
Yoga has many poses where your head is below your heart. These can range from challenging, almost acrobatic poses to easier poses. When we allow blood to flow into our brain, it can improve memory and help activate the brain’s capacity by improving the energetic circulation of prana (Life force energy).
Prana runs our chakras and interacts with cognitive functions like memory, intellect, self-perception, awareness, and expanded consciousness accessed through the upper chakras. Simply standing in forward fold is a great inversion, as is a downward facing dog. If you want to get fancy, do handstands against the wall.
#3 - Do Breathwork to Strengthen Your Nervous System and Purify the Blood
Breathing exercises common in practices such as kundalini yoga can improve the brain’s ability to order and recall information and be more creative. Bringing more energy into your nervous system helps remove negative thoughts and allows the brain to get used to positive ways of thinking.
Try doing breath of fire for 11 minutes each day and see how your alertness improves.
#4 - Read to Exercise Your Brain
The brain is a muscle and as actors find with being able to memorize long scripts, the more we use our brain, the easier it becomes. The more information we expose our brain too, the more it gets used to categorizing and processing it.
Instead of watching soap operas, give your brain something to chew on so it stays sharp and analytical instead of overstimulated and dull. Read things you’re interested in that help you stretch beyond what you know.
When you introduce new information to your brain, it will continue to expand its ability to retain, process, and store information. Think of yourself as a perpetual student and be curious about life.
#5 - Eat More Raw Fruits and Vegetables
The nutrients delivered to the brain in our blood come directly from our food. If we take in fuel full of nutrients and vitamins, our body can function optimally. Even the fiber content of these plants helps remove toxins that make our brain sluggish. Eating clean definitely helps improve our mental faculties and gives us more clarity.
Taking supplements with raw fruits and vegetables can help to make sure you’re getting enough of what you need such as amino acids, vitamins, minerals, healthy fats and proteins.
There are some great herbs we didn’t list that can be found at your health food store or online, we merely wanted to open your eyes to the wide variety of options you have to improve your brain’s abilities. Being smart isn’t just something you're born with, it’s a lifestyle.
There are different kinds of smart, it’s not all about retaining information and being able to recall it to impress people, right? We need our brain to function on many levels to keep our mood positive and to be able to comprehend developments in modern life.
Try this: 5 Activities for a Better Brain as You Age.