Your brain and central nervous system are the most essential systems in your body. While we want to assume that everything will be fine and our nervous system will remain nice and healthy until we age, this is not always the case.
15 habits that help you prevent neurological diseases
It is crucial to develop good habits that promote brain and nervous system health, as well as minimize the risk of injury or neurological disease.
1 - Eat a healthy diet
While it may not be the first thing that comes to mind when talking about neurological health, diet is just as crucial for your brain as it is for the rest of your body.
Ensuring that your body gets the proper balance of nutrients promotes overall body health, with different nutrients feeding different parts of the body.
Similar to how a lack of protein can interfere with muscle function, having too little glucose can severely hamper your brain function, causing concentration difficulties, brain fog, and even headaches.
These conditions occur because the brain runs almost entirely on glucose for fuel. However, glucose is not the only nutrient useful for the mind, as it can also make good use of:
Some of these nutrients are so effective for the brain, as noted in a recent study that choline can help reduce edema and destruction of the blood-brain barrier in large enough doses.
A healthy diet is also essential, as it can prevent other health problems that can affect the nervous system. For example, eating nothing but fatty foods and salts, eating nothing but fast food, or a high-cholesterol diet can increase the risk of blood clots.
Having a clot in the arteries leading to your brain could end up causing a stroke, which could lead to serious neurological damage. Eating a healthy diet helps reduce the risk of clotting and high blood pressure, which in turn reduces the risk of having a stroke.
2 - keep your brain working
Like any other part of your body, your brain will start to slow and dull over time, the more time you go without challenging it. Keeping your mind busy and challenged will give you more mental energy and make you feel sharper and more alert.
Quiet time spent reading, doing puzzles, or playing word games benefits your well-being.
Furthermore, it can also have the long-term effect of reducing the risk of developing neurological problems later in life. You will find that many habits are key to keeping your brain healthy overall, all with their benefits.
3 - Wear protective gear on your head
We're not saying wear a helmet wherever you go to protect your head, but wear the proper protective gear when appropriate. If you are cycling or riding a motorcycle, always wear a helmet.
If you participate in high-contact sports, wear headgear and padded gloves when you train or do massive contact exercises.
While a physical impact to the brain can cause brain damage, a direct hit to the head is not always what causes the most damage. The brain has some cushioning between itself and the cranial wall, allowing slight movement in the surrounding fluid.
With a strong enough blow, the brain can move with enough force to strike against the internal bone of the cranial cavity, and if the head is moved rapidly backwards, this could cause even more damage.
This motion is also the reason why whiplash in a car accident can lead to head injuries. Mild to severe brain trauma can have long-lasting effects, seeing a decrease in healthy brain matter years after the injury.
4 - Sleep to prevent neurological diseases
Sleep is essential for our bodies. Without sleep, our bodies cannot recharge, and there are a number of health problems that accompany it. Without the rest you need, the brain can often slow down, leading to brain fog, poor concentration, and headaches. Try to get 6 to 8 hours of sleep each night to ensure optimal brain function.
5 - be active
While a sedentary lifestyle isn't necessarily healthy in the first place, it could also have detrimental effects on the brain. Even with minor exercise, being inactive can affect memory and concentration, as well as critical thinking and information processing.
Physical activity is not only necessary for your neurological health, but also for a variety of other body systems.
6 - Write
Reading and writing are two of the best activities that can promote brain health, and journaling can be a great way to improve your mental health from an emotional point of view, so why not combine them in one package?
Keeping a journal can also help from a more practical perspective by allowing you to plan your week or deal with the things that weigh heavily on your mind.
7 - Avoid excessive drinking
While the occasional glass of wine with dinner probably won't hurt you, excessive and repeated drinking can have serious adverse effects on your entire body, and this includes your brain.
Heavy drinking is especially dangerous, as it can lead to a rapid rise in blood alcohol levels in a very short time. This habit can trigger ketosis and alcohol intoxication, leading to a variety of health problems, including brain damage.
8 - Stay connected
We as humans are social creatures, we thrive and grow best when we are surrounded by community. This social aspect is not only something that is due to today's society either, but it is connected to us.
Lack of socialization and isolation can harm your overall mental health, and keeping your mind busy is easier when you involve others. This is why study groups work so well.
9 - Relax
We must take the time to stress and relax. Prolonged stress can have a variety of adverse effects on the health of the body. Stress was initially a trigger for our fight or flight response, keeping our bodies and minds on high alert if our lives were in danger.
Now stress is caused by less dangerous problems, and while it can be a driving motivator, prolonged stress can have a severe negative impact on the health of your brain.
10 - Don't smoke
The health risks of smoking are as numerous as they are devastating. This is increasingly true for its effects on the brain. Smoking cigarettes can lead to a much higher risk of developing neurological diseases like Alzheimer's or dementia later in life.
Thanks to recent studies and research, vapers aren't much better when it comes to health risks either, so it's essential to kick the habit as soon as possible if you smoke.
11 - Stay away from environmental pollution
This may not be something you can control, but air pollution is a big problem, especially in more congested areas. If you live near a major highway or interstate, it is possible that the pollution could be affecting your overall health.
While you may not be able to get up and just walk away, it is essential to try to get some fresh air every now and then. Get out occasionally to a local park or beach away from smog if you can. Not only will the change of pace make you feel better, but the air quality will also improve.
12 - Take care of your heart
Your heart and brain are surprisingly more interconnected than you think. Your aorta branches directly into the arteries that lead to the Circle of Willis, a series of blood vessels that supply blood to the brain and surrounding areas.
While the Circle of Willis should prevent possible clotting if the aorta or vessels leading to the area become blocked, or if not enough blood flows to the brain overall, this can have a drastic effect on the brain, causing it to age. more quickly as it is not getting the nutrients it needs.
13 - Keep learning
Your brain responds well to commitment. Sitting in front of the television or doing something pointless to relax can be great for your body, but there is a lot of truth in the adage that the television will rot your brain.
Learning will help your brain continue to grow and keep its critical thinking skills sharp, which will help curb the risks of developing neurological disorders later in life.
14 - Avoid eating junk food
While this is linked to the habit of a healthy diet, avoiding overeating of junk food is also essential. Eating at least some leafy greens or vegetables in your diet on a daily basis can help give your brain the nutrients it needs to function.
Blueberries are also especially helpful in promoting brain health.
15 - Start early
Taking into account your neurological health is something that should not wait until it becomes a problem. The sooner you start promoting a healthy brain through good habits, the better your chances of reaching old age without developing some other type of neurological disorder.
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