Updated: December 5, 2015 12:03:33 am
Increasingly, young people have been complaining of forgetfulness and memory lapses. Forgetting names, faces, important dates, appointments, conversations, where you have put things, stopping mid-sentence and often stumbling on words, trying to remember what you wanted to say, lapses in concentration or experiencing brain fog — if you are experiencing any of these, it is certainly a warning sign of declining memory and brain function. Once associated with old-age and senility, this is no laughing matter for the young generation.
Several scientific studies show that starting in our early 30s, we experience significant memory loss each year along with loss of brain function. A recent scientific study at Georgia Tech University shows that the average person’s memory declines by as much as 40 per cent between 30 and 65 years of age, with an even more pronounced decline in the “golden years”.
The reasons for the acceleration of this decline could be many including multitasking, stress and technologically driven environment, toxins in air, food, and water, and unhealthy diets. Stress can alter our bodies, brains and eating habits. The body responds to stress by increasing the release of free radicals (chemicals that weaken the immune system, exposing the body to degenerative diseases), hormonal imbalances, altering eating behaviour and affecting overall productivity and well-being. Further, increased stress creates a greater need for memory boosting nutrients like Vitamin B, Vitamin C, folic acid, zinc, magnesium etc.
Some of the other common environmental factors implicated are chemicals and heavy metals in our food including fluoride in ground water, toxic pesticides, herbicides, GM (genetically modified) foods and artificial sweeteners; excessive sugar like high fructose corn syrup, increased alcohol consumption; aluminum in cookware, antiperspirants, deodorants and prolonged exposure to electromagnetic radiations.
In fact, there are some special foods known in traditional medicine which are associated with improvement of brain function and memory. These include Brahmi Ghrita and Ginko Biloba which reportedly have cognitive enhancing properties. More scientific research is needed to validate their unique bio-active compounds with specific dosages and memory enhancing properties.
The critical preventive approach to a failing memory lies in correction of diet and nutrient therapy along with sanitising the environment and stress management.
Good food, along with exercise, can play a powerful role in helping cope with stress and boost memory.
To Boost your memory, have more of:
* Antioxidants like Vitamin A, Vitamin E and Vitamin C: Found in eggs, carrots, broccoli, fish, nuts, green leafy vegetables and fruits.
* Omega 3 fatty acids:Found in fish, mustard oil, mustard seeds, methi, urad daal, rajma, soybeans, lobia, walnuts, bajra, and flaxseeds.
* Vitamin B1 (Thiamin): Found in rice bran, whole wheat flour, barley, maize, eggs, cow’s milk etc.
* Vitamin B12: Found in egg, lean meat and low-fat milk.
* Folic Acid: Found in green leafy vegetables, broccoli, pulses etc.
* Zinc: Found in whole grains, pulses, seafood, meat and poultry.
* Magnesium: Found in whole grains, leafy vegetables, legumes, peas, beans, nuts and shellfish.
* Lecithin: Found in egg yolk, soybeans, cauliflower, beans, legumes, grains and wheatgerm.
* Healthy fats: Found in nuts, seeds, olive oil, sesame oil, canola oil, sunflower oil and corn oil.
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