How to Keep Your Brain Young
Rather than trying to cope with or counteract the cognitive decline that comes naturally with age, neuroscientists say that continuing to live an active and engaged life is the best strategy.
What's the Latest Development?
When it comes to maintaining a healthy brain into old age, what you do in your later years is more important than how you lived your youth, according to new scientific evidence just published in Trends in Cognitive Science. "Engagement is the secret to success. Those who are socially, mentally and physically stimulated reliably show greater cognitive performance with a brain that appears younger than its years." The cognitive advantage of highly educated individuals as well as those with especially demanding jobs rarely outlast their own retirement, say aging experts.
What's the Big Idea?
New information on how the brain ages represent a fundamental shift in how scientists advise the public to keep their brain in good working order, even as the years accumulate. Rather than trying to cope with or compensate for the cognitive decline that comes with aging, it is better to avoid those age-related brain changes in the first place. Neuroscientist Lars Nyberg points out that memory decline occurs later than most people realize, typically after the age of 60. And aging people continue to accumulate knowledge until even later in life. According to Nyberg, the latest science increasingly supports the idea of brain maintenance.
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com
These five main food groups are important for your brain's health and likely to boost the production of feel-good chemicals.
We all know eating “healthy” food is good for our physical health and can decrease our risk of developing diabetes, cancer, obesity and heart disease. What is not as well known is that eating healthy food is also good for our mental health and can decrease our risk of depression and anxiety.
Infographics show the classes and anxieties in the supposedly classless U.S. economy.
For those of us who follow politics, we’re used to commentators referring to the President’s low approval rating as a surprise given the U.S.'s “booming” economy. This seeming disconnect, however, should really prompt us to reconsider the measurements by which we assess the health of an economy. With a robust U.S. stock market and GDP and low unemployment figures, it’s easy to see why some think all is well. But looking at real U.S. wages, which have remained stagnant—and have, thus, in effect gone down given rising costs from inflation—a very different picture emerges. For the 1%, the economy is booming. For the rest of us, it’s hard to even know where we stand. A recent study by Porch (a home-improvement company) of blue-collar vs. white-collar workers shows how traditional categories are becoming less distinct—the study references "new-collar" workers, who require technical certifications but not college degrees. And a set of recent infographics from CreditLoan capturing the thoughts of America’s middle class as defined by the Pew Research Center shows how confused we are.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.