6 Ways to Keep Your Memory Sharp

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brain and memoryThis article originally appeared on Live in the Now.

What’s worse than that feeling of not being able to remember something that you know you know? It’s infuriating. And worse, it only happens more frequently as the years pass. But there are certain foods, supplements and tricks that can help you sharpen your memory and keep it way.

#1: Coconut oil. Researchers are growing more and more optimistic about the relationship between coconut oil and memory preservation. One prominent researcher, Dr. Mary Newport, discovered that coconut oil showed exceptional promise with regards to dementia and Alzheimer’s prevention, as the medium-chain triglycerides found in coconut oil fuel certain brain cells that have a difficult time utilizing carbohydrates, the brain’s main energy source.

Read more: 7 Amazing Health Benefits of Coconut Oil

#2: DHA from fish and fish oil. While the brain’s main energy source is glucose, its building blocks are primarily comprised of fatty acids, more specifically, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). DHA makes up 70% of myelin, the protective sheath that lines active, communicating neurons. Without an abundance of DHA available, brain cell communication stands to be significantly compromised, inhibiting recall and jeopardizing brain health.

#3: Crossword puzzles and brain teasers. Crossword puzzles and brain teaser exercises keep parts of the brain active that may otherwise fall into a rut. The important thing is to become engaged in different types of puzzles as they each stimulate the brain differently, according to Ed Zimney, MD, Medical Director of HealthTalk Inc. He says, “Crossword puzzles challenge the language and memory areas [of the brain] while jigsaw puzzles provide exercise for the parietal lobes.” He urges, however, to find crossword puzzles from varying sources and editors as your brain is otherwise likely to become use to the style and receive fewer benefits.

#4: B-vitamins. B vitamins provide a tremendous benefit to brain health. The B vitamin family is associated with healthy nerve maintenance and the production of DNA. Studies have also indicated that B12 prevents brain shrinkage, making this vitamin and its benefits an area of interest for researchers as reduced brain size is commonly seen among those with dementia and Alzheimer’s.

Read more: The #1 Vitamin You Need for a Healthy Brain

#5: Curcumin. Curcumin spice was first discovered for his brain health benefits when epidemiological studies revealed that regions with a high consumption of curry had fewer reported cases of Alzheimer’s disease. It is theorized that the anti-inflammatory spice with powerful antioxidant properties inhibits the formation of amyloid plaque, a major cause of dementia.

Read more: 6 Powerful Nutrients That Fight Brain Decay

#6: Berries. The antioxidants in berries provide incredible cell protection throughout your entire body, but the antioxidant family known as anthocyanidins, found in fruits such as blueberries, strawberries, cherries and elderberries, have proven to provide powerful protection to brain cells. Unlike several other antioxidants, anthocyanidins have the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier, providing exceptional protection the brain cells.

Read more: Top 6 Foods to Beat Brain Fog

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