I’ve always wanted to write a column about how to improve your memory but I keep forgetting to do so!
Seriously, when was the last time you walked into a room, only to completely forget why you walked in there? If you are anything like me, and your world is ruled by Sticky Notes, you probably all could use a bit of a brain boost. Here are some unusual ways that may improve memory.
Clenching Your Fists – If you’re right-handed, clench your right fist while you’re trying to commit something to memory, like a person’s name, and then later clench your first when you want to remember it again. (If you’re left-handed, do the opposite.) This trick may work because clenching your hands activates the side of the brain that handles the memory. In right-handed people the right side of the brain controls memory.
Diet – There are a number of foods that claim to boost memory. Lutein foods, like spinach, eggs, broccoli, and leafy greens, can improve intelligence, cognition and memory. Quercetin rich foods are said to have the same effect. These include apples, red onion, blueberries, capers, cherries, cocoa, buckwheat, and peppers. Foods high in Omega-3s, such as oily fish are said to improve memory, and may even reduce the risk of Alzheimer ’s Disease.
Arts and Crafts – Any hobby that stimulates the brain like jigsaw or crossword puzzles can give you a brain boost, but studies have found hobbies like painting, sculpture, or learning a musical instrument, can particularly help to keep your mind sharp.
Get Enough Sleep – Fatigue impacts memory and other cognitive function. According to Allen Towfigh, MD, medical director of New York Neurology & Sleep Medicine, “getting enough sleep can improve your memory retention. When you’re getting too few hours, you’re less likely to be alert in the day. Aim for seven to nine hours nightly.”
Exercise – It seems that regular exercise is good for your “mental muscle.” A study conducted by researchers at the Center for BrainHealth at The University of Texas at Dallas found that there is a link between exercise and memory, and concluded that getting a sweat on regularly, can improve retention and ward off risk of disease.
What tricks or techniques do you use to help tweak your memory? Please share them in the comments below.