6 things to do to slow memory decline in old age
Average life expectancies are rising. While living up to 80 years used to be a mild achievement, these days, even centenarians are not that rare anymore. To enjoy our golden years, we need good mental health as much as physical health. And while our risks for dementia are influenced by our genes, there are things we can easily do to slow memory decline in old age.
In this Pacific Prime article, we look at six lifestyle habits that can help slow down memory decline. As you’ll see, healthy aging doesn’t have to be boring at all!
1. Eat a healthy diet
Designing and following a diet comprising at least seven of 12 food categories (fruits, vegetables, fish, meat, dairy products, salt, oil, eggs, cereals, legumes, nuts and tea) in appropriate amounts daily is a good thing you can easily do to slow memory decline. Naturally, when preparing your meals, you should generally adopt healthy cooking practices and take care not to add too much oil, salt or sugar.
2. Exercise your brain
Cognitive activities are the gym sessions for your brain, so make sure you engage in them at least twice a week. Needless to say, the more cognitive activities you have, the better (don’t go to the extreme, of course).
There are many ways you can go about this. For example, you can read, play card games, mah-jongg, or chess. Where feasible, play these games with other people as opposed to online because in doing so, you will have social contact (a healthy lifestyle habit in itself) while exercising your brain and having fun. What’s better than hitting two birds with one stone? Hitting three, of course!
3. Engage in physical exercise
If you exercise for at least 150 minutes a week at moderate intensity or for at least 75 minutes a week at a vigorous intensity, your risks for memory decline will be further reduced. Brisk walking (at about 4 mph or 6.4 km/h), recreational badminton, and tennis doubles are some examples of moderate-intensity activities. Jogging (at about 6 mph or 9.6 km/h), hiking, and tennis singles are considered activities of vigorous intensity.
When we exercise, our brains produce more endorphins, which are helpful for relieving pain, reducing stress and improving mood. So, in addition to improving your mental and physical health, exercising is a great way to brighten up your day.
4. Stay socially connected
Keeping up with your friends and relatives not only strengthens your bond with them but it helps you ward off memory decline. So engage with them at least twice a week. As always, the preferred way is to do it in person. Absent the opportunity, catching up with them online or by phone is a good alternative.
And who says you cannot make new friends because of your advanced age? There are plenty of people in a similar situation as yours. All it takes is someone to take the initiative to make the activity proposal, and a good place to start is your hobbies. For example, do you play an instrument? If yes, why not form your music ensemble? And what about joining a volunteer group to help those in need?
5. Quit smoking if you still haven’t
If you are still a smoker, you now have one more reason to quit. Smoking increases your risk of dementia, along with a long list of other health problems.
Indeed, smoking not only harms your health but the health of people close to you too. The health hazards of second and third-hand smoke are well documented. So quit smoking for yourself and the people you love.
6. Quit alcohol consumption
Alcohol increases your risk of memory decline just like smoking does, and the best thing to do is to kick the habit. If you cannot, drink as little and occasionally as you can.
About Pacific Prime
After decades of hard work, isn’t it time to enjoy the fruits of it? But to truly enjoy your golden years, you need the peace of mind that comes from having adequate senior citizen health insurance and pre-existing conditions insurance. Here, Pacific Prime is your trusted partner! Pacific Prime is an insurance intermediary that works with numerous insurers, so you and your family will be presented with good options that fit your budget.
So, get in touch with Pacific Prime to discuss your needs today!
Disclaimer: Pacific Prime solely represents, operates and manages locally regulated insurance products and services in the territory of PR China. Any references to Pacific Prime Global Company or Group, the international services, insurance products or otherwise stated written or verbally, is for introduction purposes about our overseas network only as each entity is fully independent.