Getting older can be exciting, but taking care of your mind and body is essential as you have more time than ever.
Giving your brain and body a bit of a boost to keep it sharp and in peak condition can help you enjoy a happier, healthier life. We explore three ways to exercise your mind and body as you age.
Remember, your brain changes as you get older
As you age, your brain experiences many changes that impact its ability to function at its best. Some of these changes include your neurons dying from old age and not being replaced and messages between your neurons being sent at a slower speed.
However, you can exercise your brain and create new connections between your existing brain neurons through^:
- Learning a new language or dance
- Having stimulating conversations with friends and family
- Doing crossword puzzles, chess, word games and ‘thinking’ games like Scrabble
You can improve your memory by 30 to 50 percent simply by exercising your brain and giving it regular workouts.
Eating a healthy diet
Eating healthy food can help keep your brain at its best. You can help boost your brain power by^:
- Eating more fruit and vegetables, making sure you get your five serves of vegetables and two servings of fruit a day
- Eating a balanced diet that includes glucose, as glucose is the brain’s only energy source
- Drink enough water to stay hydrated
- Eating less processed foods, including biscuits, pastries and fast food
Making sure you’re eating the right foods can help improve your brain health, memory and alertness.
Get physical and increase your exercise
Some conditions that impact your brain, such as stroke, are associated with your diet and lifestyle choices. Increasing your physical activity can also ensure you exercise your mind and body simultaneously.
Here are a few ways you can increase the amount of exercise you do daily^:
- Go for a 30-minute walk of moderate intensity to deliver a boost of oxygen to your brain
- Increase the amount of regular exercise you do to improve your memory, reaction times and reasoning abilities
- Do more gardening or household work to get your heart rate up on days you’re unable to go for a walk
- Try to exercise in smaller chunks of time if you’re unable to exercise for half a hour a day
Although it may be tricky to exercise, eat healthier and train your brain, staying sharp as you age can provide a lot of benefits. If you have any questions about staying sharp mentally and physically, please speak to your local Blooms The Chemist Pharmacist for more information. They’ll be happy to help you on your journey.
^Better Health Victoria, Healthy mind and older people, accessed 4 October 2023
All articles are provided as general information and are not intended, nor may it be construed, as medical advice or instruction. Information and opinions expressed are believed to be correct and accurate to the best knowledge and judgement of the authors. Readers should consult their appropriately qualified health care professional prior to taking any action or inaction.