Improving Brain Memory
One of the keys to life success is the secret of brain development and memory improvement. You can develop brain cells and improve memory through both physical and psychological factors.
My Own Experiment
I had been surprised when I was a young student. Some of my classmates always got good grades in the exams. One of the most amazing things, I observed they had excellent memories. That made me strive to develop my own ways to improve my memory.
When I was in the 9th grade, I explored to find tactics and strategies to improve my grade to at least closer to one of my classmates. One of several strategies I had tried included reading textbooks two hours before the exam in the hope that the lessons would maintain in my brain during four hours until the end of the exam. It was interesting that I could remember what I had recently read prior to the exams and could write the exam better. However, weeks later, I forgot almost everything I read for the exams. I concluded that this is not the right way to boost my memory for better grades.
I tested another two strategies which resulted in better solutions. I reviewed the lessons learned of the day and reviewed it at the end of the same day before going to bed. This strategy seemed to work very well. I also reviewed lessons several times during the semester.
Another amazing story I experienced inspired by Dr. Daniel George Amen, M.D., the American psychiatrist, the author of “Change Your Brain Change Your Life”. I focused on several factors in order to improve my brain and memory. Eventually, I was one of many students who had moderate to high memory in the classroom when I was in the 10th grade. Some may be surprised why that is important and what it is about me.
I recalled that I could write answers in the exam word by word from the lessons for 20 questions in one exam. I must emphasize I remembered word by word. I had thought that was the result of my practice. Years later I realized the reasons behind when I grew up.
There are many factors supporting brain development and improving brain memory. The healthy brain cells are the secret behind memory development. the brain cells basically are maintained and improved by good nutrition, mentality, sleep quality, language skills, good environment, physical exercises, and genetics. I am fortunate that I had several of those factors, except genetics. This may prove that everyone has the same starting point at birth, and the human brain and memory can be developed and improved from childhood to adult.
I am a moderate person with no extraordinary life. I have an attitude that I am having self-satisfaction and happiness, which I believe is a certain level of a successful life. One thing that I learned is having a healthy brain will support brain development, and that is a major component to life success.
We agree that nowadays the new educational programs value the core understanding in school lessons, rather than memorizing. However, we may agree that an individual having good memories has a high potential for educational and life success.
I discovered the ways to improve brain memory naturally are healthy habits and lifestyles. With the continuing practice, it can boost brain health contributed to memory development.
I have a disclaimer that the information here derived from my life experience and research. I am not a doctor or psychiatrist who has the credential. I share the message for good deeds to my family, friends, and societies.
Important of Brain Executive Function
The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is the cerebral cortex that covers the front part of the frontal lobes, typically located in the front head area of a human head. The picture illustrated the PFC in the frontal lobe areas.
The PFC typically carries out the brain executive function, which relates to abilities to determine or differentiate conflicting thoughts, good and bad, better and best, same and different, future consequences of current activities, working toward a defined goal, prediction of outcomes, expectation based on actions, and social consequences or outcomes.
The brain executive function supports human learning and judgments. Therefore it is important to protect the prefrontal cortex area by simply avoiding pressure or concussion at the head especially the area of the frontal lobes.
For example, we will have safety awareness to avoid risks of front head injury. Many situations like walking in the warehouse, factory, or driving on vehicles, safety hats or seat belts can protect our PFC from an extreme concussion.
In addition, we should avoid pressure from constant hits or pressure on the head from any kind of activity such as during the football games, from angry behaviors, or falling from the heights.
Constant pressure or an immediate concussion may affect the brain cell and diminish the learning and memory development, regulated by the brain executive function in the Prefrontal Cortex.
Importants of Brain Development and Memory Improvement
Human memory will develop and improve better over the developmental years. Basic memory or non-complicated memory can improve over time. However, based on the scientific study and 2019 evidence, implicit memory which involves more long-term memory has little effects from the first year born.
Much of the brain system is formed before birth, however, 70% of vital brain cells develop in adults. This explains that a child’s developing cognitive skills and abilities are less affected by age. On the other hand, a child can improve implicit memory at a later age.
The studies promoted the idea that an aged adult brain was developed from childhood.
How to Improve Brain Memory Naturally
I have learned over the years from my experience about the habits and lifestyle that could improve brain cells and develop memory. They are just natural lifestyles that support brain health, memory system, and overall health.
Dr. Amen gave more insights into the secret of brain development. I adapted them and explored them with my own. Here are 7 habits and 10 lifestyles to improve brain health and brain memory development in the natural ways that work effectively for me and you. They are just simple habits and easy lifestyles to follow. I believe it works well for anyone who values the healthiness. The ways to improve brain memory include both physical and psychological factors.
7 Habits – Physical Factors for Improving Memory
1. Drink Water
Drinking water can help the brain work functionally well and boost energy levels. The brain is strongly influenced by hydration status. 1 – 3% fluid loss can cause mild dehydration affecting energy levels and mood, and lead to major reductions in memory and brain performance.
Drinking water can sometimes help relieve headache symptoms which involves the brain cells, especially in people who are dehydrated.
Risks of heart failure in the morning can be reduced if an individual drinks one to two cups of water first thing in the morning.
2. Get Quality Enough Sleep
The brain function will work more effectively after a good night’s sleep. Hours of sleep depend on aging, health, and physical conditions.
A study revealed that nurses having enough and quality sleep made less mathematical mistakes and get higher scores than nurses working the night shift. While you sleep the brain is active during REM sleep which will promote the memory function and the cognitive system in the brain.
An average adult should sleep 7 to 9 hours. Lack of good night sleep affects memory development results in lower performance, affects school learning, and impairs judgment. Learn more about sleep quality and hours of sleep in the Sleep Deprivation.
3. Exercise Regularly
Exercises can improve the brain cells in the aspect of memory and thinking, through both direct and indirect means. Exercises will promote the body to reduce insulin resistance, reduce inflammation, and stimulate the release of growth factors. Those of which are chemicals in the brain that affect the health of brain cells, the growth of new blood vessels in the brain, and even the abundance and survival of new brain cells.
Exercises indirectly improve mood and sleep, and reduce stress and anxiety. Bad mood, stress, and anxiety frequently contribute to cognitive impairment.
Walking is a free safety exercise. When I was in the 5th grade to the final year in the university, I walked 2 kilometers a day during school weeks. That helped promote my brain and overall health for many years later.
4. Have Good Food, Take Medicine or Herb with Doctor’ s Care
Especially for you who cannot avoid late-night sleep, it is important to have good food that provides essential amino acid, protein, and minerals, which are essential to the brain.
Protein and essential nutrients from fish, soybean, egg yolk, whole wheat, ginkgo, and dark chocolate benefit the brain development and memory system.
White protein from white fish, chicken, white egg, and tofu have the protein that enhances amino acid essential for the brain, like Dopamine and Epinephrine. They are good nutrients that help maintain the healthiness of brain cells.
The chemical in herbs and medicine may be harmful to the body and the nervous system. Consult your doctor before taking medicine, herbs, and supplementary food.
5. Train Your Brain
Training your brain with a simple game like jigsaw or scrabble once a week is a very good tactic to develop and retain your memories. Researchers at the Université Bordeaux Ségalen and the Institute for European Expertise in Physiology found that adult patients who regularly played board games were 15 percent less likely to develop dementia than their non-game-playing peers.
My colleague introduced a word-search game in the office, and we had the game every Wednesday during the 15-minute break time. A short break from the regular work hour for playing a new game together helps improve the brain and memory development and learn new skills at the same time. My teammate and I also enjoyed the time of the word-search game which improved the morale and work relationship, which also increased good hormone in the body that benefits the brain function.
6. Listen to Music or White Noise
Having music for your life can improve your mentality. Whatever styles or favorites, music helps relax your muscles and brain. Hum your favorite music is a good tactic for your memory development.
For some individuals, white noise can help their focus and/or improve their sleep. White noise can help calm the nerve and reduce stress. Especially when you are in the middle of somewhere or are not familiar with the situation and feel nervous, it helps.
7. Meditate or Practice Mindfulness
Practicing mindfulness and meditation can help retain important memories for longer. Researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara found that participating in two weeks of mindfulness exercises improved study subjects’ GRE scores, boosting their working memory along the way.
Practice meditation through praying calms the soul, enhances energy levels, and encourages mentality to handle any circumstances during the day. You can focus more on the tasks and work more effectively with daily practice.
10 Lifestyles – Psychological Factors for Memory Improvement
1. Set a Clear Life purpose
An individual who has a purpose in life can increase optimism and enhance abilities to recover mental health. With a life purpose, you tend to believe your life has greater meaning. That could reduce the risks of depression, physical decline, disability, and Alzheimer’s disease.
According to the study by Patricia Boyle, Ph.D., and the Rush University researcher, the scientists found that adults with a clear sense of life purpose were far less likely to experience certain types of stroke. That study suggests having a purpose in life helps keep the brain healthy and have higher levels of psychological well-being. The study supported that the lower level of cortisol hormones can trigger anxiety, headache, hypertension, and inflammation.
The study also suggests that people who live purposefully are more likely to be positive and strive to live longer meaningfully. They tend to adopt healthy lifestyle habits such as a regular exercise program, eating a balanced diet, and engaging in effective stress management techniques. This also explains people having life purpose have better heart health.
Make clear and simple life purposes with a deadline, and you will focus on the value of life and have the energy to work towards them. You may be far from the risks of dementia and Alzheimer disease.
2. Be Positive
Positive thinking will improve the mentality, and it is good for the brain. Try to focus on the bright sides and develop positive thoughts every day. When we feel good and happy the brain produces cortisol hormones (“hormone of pleasure”) work with adrenaline to create memories of short-time emotional events and improve memory by retrieval of already stored information.
Learn to ignore negative sensations and not let them impact your mood. Control your emotions and not justify or blaming others.
Positive thoughts reduce stress. Stress causes headaches, anxiety, muscle pain, restlessness, lack of motivation and focus, and sleep problem, just to name a few. Those of which are associated with brain and memory development. Be positive will give you more energy to deal with every situation and solve problems.
3. Be Gratitude and Thankful
To be grateful to every situation will improve mentality. You can write a gratitude journal and be thankful for what you receive or are blessed each day. Your brain will produce cortisol, the hormone of pleasure, which is good for the brain.
For example, I am thankful for the rainy day because I do not need to worry about watering my garden. I am thankful for missing the bus, I can find a seat on the next bus.
When you are thankful for what you have or experience that is not worse than others, you have less stress and able to control the mood. Stress and depression affect the brain and memory.
4. Help people
Be empathy with others and find opportunities to offer help to someone at least once a day. This is a way to expose yourself and your ability to associate with people
Helping others will give you new experience, skills, and relationships. The gladness you experience in seeing others being better by your help will encourage your pleasure and good mood. Those associate with your brain and contribute to improving your memory.
5. Learn Something New
Learn something new every day. Do your favorite hobbies or activities you love. Your brain will exercise the challenge. Find new life experiences and collect them for your life journal. In the process, you will learn new experiences and skills that can improve the brain and develop memory.
6. Associate with Optimistic People
Connect with optimistic people will help you see good sides of the situation and focus on positivity. Meet people who have a healthy attitude will give your energy and may encourage you to live life more meaningfully. Your brain and memory will improve.
Join the church activities and/or meet with counselors. You will feel life is more valuable. Good mental health will improve the brain and memory system.
7. Have Eye Contact
When you talk or meet someone with your eye contacts you are passing sincerity and good feeling to the other persons. That also strengthens your mindfulness and increases your energy which is good for the brain.
8. Smile and Laugh
When you smile or laugh, the body releases endorphins and serotonin. The hormones help relax your body, lower your heart rate and blood pressure, help improve mood, release stress, and release pain. The serotonin release also serves as an anti-depressant which is good for the brain.
The great reaction from others will cheer you up and increase joy. Joyfulness is good for the brain which contributes to your memory development. Smile is a free medication for your brain and takes away the negative side effects.
9. Express your Love and Concerns
The way to appreciate others and reward them is by giving compliments or hug. Take every moment to express your love and concern. What you give you will get. So you give love and concerns to others, you will get the same. That will increase healthy hormones which benefit your brain and memory.
10. Spend Time with Friends
Sometimes it is fine to find your space and stay alone. However, most of the time you will take chances to meet and talk with people. Stay alone may lead to depression or unpleasant thoughts. Call Hotline if necessary to talk with someone. Depression or stress affects your brain and memory.
The principal of improving brain memory involves the strategies to improve the brain cells, improve blood flow, develop good hormones, calm the nerve, and enhance positive mentality.
It is very important to protect the prefrontal cortex at the front lobe areas in your front head, which performs as the executive function, contributed to the memory improvement.
Continuing practicing a healthy lifestyle will gradually improve the brain cells and memory development naturally.
Two essential factors that help improve the brain came from both physical and psychological factors. Physical factors include brain cells, blood flow, nerves, and hormones. Psychological factors involve mood and mentality. The way to boost physical factors is having water, good food, proper sleep, exercises, clear and clam your nerve through brain exercises and meditation. On the other hand, psychological factors are the same important. Those of which are learning to improve positivity, pleasure moments, promote good feeling and have life purposes.
I believe this article will give you some thoughts about the lifestyles that naturally improve your brain health, improves your brain memory, and potentially help you far from dementia and Alzheimer. A healthy brain with good brain memory will support your life success.
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