After retirement many people are concerned with staying physically active so as to not lose mobility or independence, however, people can sometimes not pay enough attention to keeping their mind active also. Over the years, everyone’s brains change, just like with all our muscles, it can start to deteriorate, and thus begins symptoms such as forgetfulness, or losing the ability to think quickly. Keeping our minds active is just as important as keeping our bodies active, an active mind can help you have a better quality of life just as being physically active can. Therefore, we have compiled a list of 5 ways to boost your elderly brain and live longer, in order to help you stay on top of your cognitive abilities.

1) Mind Games

This one is particularly important, as we play physical games for our bodies, we need to partake in mental games for our mind. Some excellent examples of mental games are crosswords, sudokus, word searches, or quizzes, just about anything that requires a high level of thinking. It is also great to have a hobby that takes a lot of thinking, maybe you could learn a new language, learn how to knit, or take up learning some other skill. Finally, reading is another fantastic way to keep your brain ticking along, it can be any book you like, whether its a storybook or an encyclopedia, the contents really don’t matter. All of the above help reduce memory loss and keep your mind engaged and active, and the more of them you do the better.

2) Stay Social

Social interactions are important for our mind, there is a clear connection between being socially active, and having a healthy mind. When we spend too much time alone, our mind can start to deteriorate, and the longer this goes on, the bigger the problem. Loneliness is a killer for our brains, going days, week, or months without having the social connections that our mind crave is extremely unhealthy, loneliness has even been linked to dementia. Staying social is essential for our mental health, which in turn is essential to keeping our minds working well, and helping to ward off any cognitive problems.

3) Sleep Well

In order for your mind to function as it should you need to sleep well. I’m sure there have been countless instances throughout your life where you have forgone sleep or lacked sleep, which caused you to forget something, or struggle with a task. Well, as you reach your senior years, you are not now suddenly an exception. Sleep is just as important now, if not more important, as it was in your younger years. Getting enough quality sleep each night is a great way to ensure that your mind is able to focus and stay sharp.

4) Eat the Right Foods

Believe it or not, the state our mind is in is linked with how good our diet is. Having a poor diet that is lacking in nutrients and vitamins has a serious knock-on effect on our minds. Think of your mind as an engine, you cannot expect the engine to work how it should and give a good performance if you are putting the wrong products into the engine. Neurological studies have shown again and again, that those who eat a good and nutritious diet with plenty of leafy greens such as spinach and kale slow down their cognitive decline. Additionally, foods such as fish, nuts, and seeds that contain omega-3 can also be very beneficial at maintaining a healthier mind.

5) Limit your Alcohol

This might be a product that you wouldn’t connect with your mental abilities, however, it does have an effect, and if alcohol is abused it can have a serious effect. Having the odd drink here and there is no problem, it is normal for anyone to enjoy a social drink or a nightcap. But, it estimated that having more than two alcoholic drinks per day is enough to have a serious effect on your brain function, even to the point where it can speed up and worsen symptoms of illnesses such as dementia.

These are all small changes or small additions to your life that you can do in order to keep your mind active and live longer, which I’m sure we can agree that is what everyone wants. So, give them a go and see what a difference they can make to your mind.