2016 Brain Health Resolutions

Senior Brain Health Resolutions

As 2015 comes to a close, the Cognitive Therapeutics team would like to encourage our readers to make 2016 the year of prioritizing long-term brain health. New Year’s Resolutions serve as a great way for individuals to reflect on the prior year and make positive goals for the next. Below we have utilized some of the newest, cutting-edge  research around brain health and crafted resolutions you can adopt to make brain healthy choices in the coming year.

1. Resolve to quit smoking. We all know that smoking affects cardiovascular and respiratory health, but research now shows that smoking can thin the cerebral cortex, or the part of the brain responsible for executive functioning, memory, attention, language and awareness. Learn more.

2. Resolve to eat a Mediterranean diet. The Mediterranean diet, which consists of fruit, vegetables, grains, fish,  wine in moderation and monounsaturated fats, can boost overall brain health and prevent cognitive decline. It can even counteract the normal brain shrinkage that comes with aging.  Learn more.

3. Resolve to limit sugar and fat in your diet. Research shows that diets high in sugar and fat can negatively affect your microbiome, or healthy bacteria in your gut, which can impede cognitive flexibility. Learn more.

4. Resolve to engage in light exercise. Research shows that structurally sound white matter in the brain increases with physical activity, allowing regions of the brain to communicate more effectively and also helping diminish the chance of developing cognitive decline.  Learn more.

5. Resolve to de-stress through meditation. Meditation is a popular and effective way to reflect, connect with oneself, promote calm and lower stress levels. Research also shows that meditation can promote neuroplasticity and slow the rate of neurodegeneration in certain areas of the brain. Learn more.

6. Resolve to stimulate your mind. Learning new skills, engaging in a hobby, or reading and playing games can all stimulate the mind and promote more flexible and adaptable brain connections. We recommend crafting as a fun and creative way to engage the mind and relax the body. Learn more.

Here’s to making 2016 the year you take your brain health into your own hands! There is compelling research pointing to positive lifestyle choices you can make to promote cognitive vitality and prevent cognitive decline. We encourage you to consider embracing some or many of the resolutions above in the coming year.