4 Ways to Improve Your Memory with Weight Loss

May 13, 2013

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Improve Your MemoryYour health decisions today affect your mental health tomorrow.

It’s hard to look in the mirror, see past your physical appearance, and peer into the state of your mental health years down the road. But that may be all you have to do. More and more research shows your physical health is one of the biggest predictors of your mental future.

Unfortunately, the statistics do not look promising. Nearly half of people ages 85 and older have Alzheimer’s disease, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

But you don’t have to become part of the statistic. You have a say in your future, and it starts with health conscious decisions you make every day. Follow my tips to lose weight while boosting brainpower.

Exercise: When you move, you exercise your body and your brain. It’s not a coincidence that you feel more productive at work after you take a brisk, 10-minute walk. Now, research backs it up. A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found higher midlife fitness levels are associated with a reduced risk of developing dementia later in life.

Obesity is associated with a number of health conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease. When you are overweight, blood does not pump as effectively through the body. Your brain relies on nutrients from your blood to function properly, and when you exercise, you increase blood flow to your brain, which may help improve your memory.

Eat Foods High in Fat: Don’t be scared of fats, at least not the healthy kinds. A study published in the Annals of Neurology found monounsaturated fats, like the fats found in olive oil and avocado, may slow brain aging. The study found women who had a high intake of saturated fat appeared five or six years older than their biological age, while women who had a high intake of monounsaturated fat appeared six or seven years younger.

Worried a diet high in fat will derail your medical weight loss plan? Don’t be. In fact, many dieters make the mistake of cutting nutritional calories. Healthy fats provide the body nutrients necessary to function. The high calorie content actually helps you feel full, longer.

Drink in Moderation: Calorie-laden drinks not only add inches to your waistline, but they also may increase your risk of cognitive decline. One study found adults ages 65 and older who participated in binge drinking at least twice a month were two and a half times more likely to experience memory decline. Although some studies suggest red wine can help improve your memory, it’s important to only consume in moderation to reap the benefits.

Bring on the Berries: Numerous studies show berries are brain food, and the fruits are juiciest in the spring, so get them while they last! Berries are low calorie and packed with disease-fighting antioxidants, making them a suitable addition to your weight loss plan. Blueberries and strawberries pack the most flavonoids, which researchers believe is the element associated with cognitive decline.

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[…] nutritional benefits can help protect against stroke, heart disease, and certain cancers. Need a brain boost? Eating more blueberries is linked with improved memory and healthy cognitive […]

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