Seniors - 3 Smart Ways to Beat Brain Fog
Lost your keys? Forgot about an important appointment? Having trouble concentrating?
If you’re experiencing brain fog like this, it’s time to take a closer look at what might be causing the problem and what you can do about it.
Some age-related memory loss is a normal part of the aging process. And Alzheimer’s disease and dementia is a growing problem among adults. But in many cases, that’s not what’s behind brain fog.
So what does cause brain fog? It’s usually one of these things:
- Poor food choices and dehydration. If you’re not eating healthy foods and drinking plenty of water, your body and your brain won’t be getting the nutrients they need.
- Sleep problems. Less than 7 hours of sleep per night isn’t enough, and more than 9 is probably too much.
- Stress and mental health issues. If you’re stressed out or have anxiety, depression or other mental health issues, your brain has a hard time with memory, concentration, and decision making.
- Hormone changes. Aging women going through menopause sometimes experience brain fog. But changes in hormone levels related to age can have an impact on men, too.
- Health conditions. Certain health conditions can contribute to brain fog like multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, Alzheimer’s and dementia, and the autoimmune disease lupus.
- Certain medications. Feeling foggy? It could be the medications you’re taking for chemotherapy, high blood pressure, pain, or sleep.
So how do you beat brain fog? You know yourself better than anyone. If brain fog or forgetfulness is negatively impacting your life, talk to your doctor. You can also improve brain function in three specific ways:
1. Eat healthy food. This includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, fish, and legumes, and plenty of water. Looking for an easy way to eat healthier? Check out the Senior-Friendly menu of meals made from fresh ingredients and ready to eat in minutes.
- Get your Zzzs. Aim for 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. If you’re having trouble getting 7 hours a night, take a nap during the day. Going to bed at the same time every night, even on weekends can help, too. Avoid caffeine in the afternoon and evening. And turn off all electronics at least an hour before bed.
3. Manage stress in healthy ways. Choose an activity you enjoy like yoga or meditation to reduce stress. Exercise, connecting with friends, or making time for a hobby you enjoy can help, too.
Taking care of your brain as you age will help improve memory and your health.