In this article, we’ll cover some natural methods you can use for enhancing your memory capacity that has been backed up by scientific evidence.
It’s really common to have issues with your memory, at any age; however, as we get older these slips may occur more frequently. It may surprise you to hear that there are actually natural, medication-free ways that you can keep your memory in top shape. Research into memory-enhancement has been extensive, and researchers have delineated a number of key factors of influence.
Exercise Your Brain
The more you work your brain, the better shape it will be in. You can keep your mind sharp by engaging in cognitively challenging tasks like doing puzzles, playing chess, or other analytical tasks. Creative activities like painting or playing an instrument can also improve memory.
A study published in PLOS ONE found that brain training games can boost executive functions, working memory, and processing speed in young adults. There’s also research to indicate that cognitive training can stave off dementia; a study in the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society found that doing crossword puzzles delayed the onset of cognitive decline in people who have Alzheimer’s disease.
Drink Coffee for Memory Consolidation
There is some evidence to show that ingesting caffeine can boost your memory. A study in Frontiers in Psychology showed that caffeine improved the memory performance of young adults during their least productive part of the day. Pour yourself a cup!
Be as Active as Possible
The benefits of exercise in improving memory and overall cognition are immense. It enhances circulation to the body and brain and keeps you mentally sharp. According to Harvard Health Publishing, exercise boosts your thinking skills too. A study in the Natural Medicine Journal showed that exercise improved memory task performance in young adults (1) while other studies show it can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. (2)
Improve Your Diet
Certainly keeping a healthy lifestyle with a diet rich in vitamins and minerals will do a lot to enhance your brain functioning. Try to include a lot of antioxidant-rich foods in your diet like berries, carrots, pumpkin, milk, nuts, seafood, lean meats, and red wine. (3)
At the same time, try to cut back on foods that are detrimental to your cognitive health. There’s evidence to indicate that eating a lot of sugar can create cognitive deficits over time (4) and the same is true of refined carbohydrates, as they cause your sugar levels to rapidly increase.
When you engage in mindfulness, you try to be as aware of your surroundings and your actions as possible, and this can have a positive impact on memory and cognitive processing. A study in Memory and Cognition found that mindfulness improves verbal learning and memory, and researchers found that mindfulness participants used an advanced memory coding process.
Chew More Gum
Believe it or not, there’s some limited evidence to indicate that chewing gum can improve cognitive performance. This is likely because it stimulates the hippocampus, which is a central area for memory. (5)
A study published in BioMed Research International looked at the effect of gum chewing on various cognitive work tasks. They found that chewing gum during the workday was associated with better cognitive performance and higher productivity.
This is a finding that requires more research to back it up, but it could be worth a try!
Get More Restful Sleep
Good brain health does require that you get an adequate amount of sleep every night. If you don’t get enough sleep, it can have a detrimental effect on your memory. Sleep allows your memories to be properly consolidated, according to the evidence. This is even true of a brief nap.
A study at the University of Lubeck looked at high school students and their memory recall the following sleep. They found that sleep improved recall and that sleep deprivation had a very negative impact on memory. (6)
Lessen Your Stress
Stress is a major factor that affects our memory functioning. An article in the Journal of Neuroscience even stated that acute stress can affect the way we form new memories.
However, how much your memory is affected depends on the levels of stress you experience. High levels of stress can negatively impact cognitive functioning and memory while more moderate levels can actually facilitate learning. (7)
It’s important to balance the amount of stress you experience in your life, so it doesn’t become dysfunctional, as part of an overall healthy lifestyle.
Natural Nootropic Supplements
There are a number of organic nootropic supplements on the market that aim to enhance overall mental performance and memory. Most of these products have both brain-enhancing properties and also increase your energy and motivation. They use memory-enhancing ingredients such as Vitamin C, Folic Acid, Resveratrol, and L-Tyrosine, to name a few.
Provasil is one example of a high-quality organic supplement that can boost your memory. With its blend of natural, clinically proven ingredients it supports better overall brain health, improving sharpness and alertness while reducing mental fatigue. Provasil can be taken on a regular basis to reduce cognitive decline, or used just when an extra boost of brainpower is needed.
Memory and cognitive processing can be influenced by numerous natural factors, which means there are lifestyle changes we can make which can actively improve them. Clearly the best way to enhance memory functioning is to follow a healthy lifestyle.
Research shows the benefits of exercise and following a well-balanced diet in improving brain health. Limiting your levels of stress so you don’t get overwhelmed is another positive health decision that can elevate memory processing. Getting an adequate amount of sleep or even taking short naps during the day can also have a major impact.
Following these habits can keep your mind in better shape as you age and help prevent the cognitive decline that can occur with time.