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Tips - March 27, 2022

7 Habits that could Damage your Brain if you Don’t Quit Now

If you don’t use your intellect, you will eventually lose it because the brain is built on understanding, analysing, and appraising information.

In a digital world where technology has levelled the playing field, some people still ignorantly refuse to improve their mental capacity while others feed on garbage online. To be your most productive self, you must begin modifying some habits that regularly damage your brain.

Experts believe our contemporary lifestyle erodes cerebral networks, causing us to become slower, mindless, and less talented in thinking original ideas.

As a result, the brain is becoming stressed due to hyperconnectivity. Gradually, we wind up being less productive and ineffective.

Since the human brain is an integral part of the body, it requires proper nutrition to function. However, if you do not break some of your regular habits, you may damage your brain. 

Here are some habits that damage your brain when you do not quit.

1. Not allowing yourself to be exposed to new ideas

If you don’t use your intellect, you will eventually lose it. This is because the brain is built on understanding, analysing, and appraising information. However, like any muscle, the brain must be flexed.

According to a Harvard Health article, “stimulating ideas, hard activities, and learning new abilities all help the brain manufacture new cells, creating neurological “plasticity,” and accumulating a functional reserve that protects against future cell loss.”

2. You’re not saying nearly enough

Face-to-face communication is no longer necessary as a result of digital technology. However, research is discovering that social engagement, as discussion, is beneficial to brain function.

Our brains’ ability to carry on cerebral discussions is being dulled by short, deliberate text interactions replacing emojis for visual emotions.

According to Elise Caccappolo, a professor of neuropsychology at Columbia University, “When you’re socialising, the blood travels to multiple different sections of your brain as you’re listening and developing replies”.

3. Breathe in brain food

The brain needs clean, uncontaminated fresh air to function correctly. You are depriving your brain of what it needs to grow if you’re not getting excellent quality air due to pollution, stuffy rooms, or not breathing deeply enough.

Humans go weeks without food, days without a drink, but only minutes without oxygen.

When working, sit properly, learn some deep breathing techniques to strengthen your diaphragm, and inhale as much clean, fresh air as possible.

4. Isolation

There is a connection between dementia and loneliness. Loneliness has nothing to do with the number of friends; instead, how your human relationships satisfy your sense of belonging.

Lacking a sense of belonging can create stress and despair, leading to pain reactions in the brain. According to Rush University Medical Center study, lack of social connections results in serious cognitive decline.

5. Loss of hearing

Hearing loss has no direct impact on brain function. However, you need your ears to get important information, and if you cannot hear anything, you can lose important information.

According to John Hopkins University, hearing-impaired persons have a 30 to 40% increased risk of cognitive decline.

6. Stop smoking

If you check the back of a cigarette pack, you will see a warning about the health consequences of smoking. Smoking harms the vascular system that transports blood to the brain, raising the risk of stroke.

Tobacco includes a chemical that affects the central nervous system’s white blood cells to assault healthy cells, resulting in neurological damage. Cigarettes promote the thinning of the cerebral cortex, which causes issues with thinking and memory.

In 2003, the American Journal of Public Health released research linking smoking to quicker decreases in verbal memory in people aged 43 to 53. 

Also, in 2010, researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, discovered that smoking substantially increases a person’s risk of acquiring Alzheimer’s disease.

7. Trim the Fat

Since people are what they eat, you won’t get the best if you don’t feed your brain the right foods. As a result, cut some slack on certain foods, especially high-fat foods. High fat, poor nutrient diets results in worse cognitive performance.

In 2012, the Journal of Neurology published a study of 6000 patients aged 50 and over who were followed for ten years. Overweight people exhibited a 22% greater rate of decline in cognitive abilities.

Also, Tufts University researchers looked at the “low-carb” diet in 2008. This linked to a high fat and protein diet. The study looked at two groups of women, one on a “low-carb” diet and the other on a balanced diet as advised by the American Dietetic Association. On memory-based activities, the low-carb diet group fared worse.

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