According to the World Health Organization, global life expectancy in 2016 was 72, and year by year that life expectancy increases. Sounds like good news, but since increased age is associated with mental decline, we must take action to keep our brains in good shape. Cognitive decline can start in early adulthood but it isn’t inevitable. Looking after your brain is not that different from looking after your general physical health as shown in this infographic.
Like any other part of the body, our brains need exercise. It is vital that we challenge ourselves and keep every area of the brain working to prevent decline. Finding new stimulating intellectual exercises encourages the brain to develop new pathways. These challenges may be as simple as learning to play a musical instrument, taking dance classes, or learning a new language.
It goes without saying, that a healthy brain requires nourishment. Make sure that your diet is well-balanced and includes proteins and unsaturated fats. Staying active is equally important. Exercise promotes good physical, mental, and psychological health. Anxiety increases the heart rate and blood pressure which can cause a stroke, so make sure you're taking care of your mental health as well. Regular exercise helps to reduce stress and anxiety too.
The brain needs deep sleep to carry out repairs, consolidate information, and build up the immune system. Make sure that you get at least seven hours of sleep every night.2