Mild Cognitive Impairment – 5 Ways to Promote Brain Health

There are several natural ways to help prevent mild cognitive impairment.  Five of the most common can be easily added to your daily lifestyle to help ward off disease.

Physical & Mental Exercise

Regular physical exercise has long been known to help improve many aspects of cognitive functions for those with memory loss or with conditions such as mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer’s disease.  Studies show how there is an increase in dynamic flexibility in the medial temporal lobe network following exercise. Light to moderate movement daily is helpful in improving overall health. 

As we age, the mechanisms in our brain may slow over time. By doing brain exercises such as reading or doing crossword puzzles, you exercise the muscles in your mind and keep them in top condition. Learning new things on a regular basis challenges your mind and helps to keep it healthy.

Improve Your Diet

Diet is very important to brain health.  The brain is made up of many fats, and maintaining a diet that feeds the brain is helpful to help prevent inflammation and other memory-related diseases.  Diets like the anti-inflammatory or Mediterranean diets can be beneficial to the health of MCI memory, helping to improve memory to avoid] losing things or forgetting appointments. Simply making regular dietary changes may help to ward off mild cognitive impairment.

Improve Your Sleep

Sleep is necessary to assist with a variety of essential brain functions. Consistent good-quality sleep is known to help prevent cognitive and overall health decline. Learning and memories are consolidated during sleep and there are several studies that show that less than seven or eight hours of sleep may affect mental functions. According to a study, those with four hours or fewer had worse cognition and faster decline in cognitive function and memory.

Decrease Alcohol Consumption

According to a large JAMA study, there was a one-to-two fold excess risk of dementia associated with heavy alcohol consumption compared to moderate drinking. Some studies suggest that people who consume no more than an average of one alcoholic beverage per day may have a lower risk of dementia. Drinking a smaller amount of alcohol daily can allow you to enjoy your life today without harming yourself tomorrow.

Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness is known for soothing the soul. Additionally, there are also known benefits in helping improve aspects of mood, thinking and memory.  Several approaches to mindfulness and cognitive training may help delay decline in the early stages of a neurological condition and may foster an overall improvement to your quality of life. Additional research and time may be needed to clarify the outcomes relative to both the amount of time spent on mindfulness and the longevity of the treatments.

If you have a neurological condition and are unsure of what to ask your doctor, you may refer to several questions that may help.  Palm Beach Neurological Center is a local neurological center in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida that provides clinical services and conducts several clinical studies. Dr. Tuchman is a board-certified neurologist who treats his patients with the utmost care. Please contact us for more information on Alzheimer’s or the prevention of mild cognitive impairment. We can be reached at (561) 694-1010.

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