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HindustanTimes Thu,02 Oct 2014

Sharpen your memory

Dr Anjali Mukerjee, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, July 23, 2013
First Published: 14:52 IST(23/7/2013) | Last Updated: 19:39 IST(26/7/2013)

Everyone needs a good memory, whether you are a student, working professional, homemaker or senior citizen wanting to preserve the precious grey cells. Here are a few things you can do to improve your recall power.

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Exercise your mind
The human brain has a remarkable ability to adapt itself to new challenges. Just like you need to eat right and exercise regularly to keep physically fit, you need to eat right for your brain and engage in mental activity to keep mentally fit. Solving puzzles, writing essays, reading books, learning a new language and participating in a quiz or debates, are helpful in maintaining mental agility. Dancing or learning music can stimulate brain cells as well as de-stress your mind.

BrainSnooze away
When you are sleep-deprived, your brain cannot function optimally. During sleep, the brain processes, stores and consolidates information while the body performs restorative functions. Chronic sleep deprivation may result in lack of concentration, irritability and mood swings leading to tiredness. It ultimately reduces the brain’s performance and affects your decision-making capacity. It is necessary for an adult to get about 7-8 hours of restful sleep in a day.

Love your work
The greatest antidote to boredom is passion and with passion comes wholehearted involvement. When we are passionate about a particular subject we dedicate a larger portion of our time and energy for the mastery of that subject. This repeated exposure to a subject, hardwires the brain in such a way that the mind become sharper.

Food for thought
Antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids are brain foods. Sources rich in omega-3 fatty acids include fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel and vegetarian sources include flaxseeds, walnuts and canola oil. Antioxidants are known for their role in improving brain health as they merge with free radicals which may harm brain cells. Foods rich in antioxidants include all coloured vegetables like carrots, tomatoes, broccoli and garlic. Avoid saturated fats and reduce your intake of alcohol. Also cut down on junk food, tobacco products and completely stay away from narcotic drugs.

Dr Anjali Mukerjee is a nutritionist and the founder of Health Total, a nutrition counselling centre.  


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