Friday, February 13, 2009

AGE-PROOF YOUR BRAIN


Of late I’ve noticed that my 82-year old mother has become increasingly forgetful. She can’t remember what day it is and where she put her things. She can’t remember the names of the younger family members, and how they are related to her.


Watching her, I often wonder when I’ll be just like her and forget even simple everyday things. We all dread AD or Alzheimer's Disease. Is it the inevitable follow-up to memory loss? Yet there are people older than my mother who have retained their sharpness of mind like Singapore Minister Mentor, Lee Kuan Yew, 85, Royal Professor Ungku Abdul Aziz, 87, and supercentenarian, Teresa Hsu, 110.


Naturally I was very excited when I came across Tony Buzan’s Age-Proof Your Brain”. According to him, “It’s a misconception that your brain automatically deteriorates with age, and there is science to prove it. What is true is that you need to look after your brain...to keep it performing well for you.”


His book is packed with plenty of intellectually stimulating exercises designed to sharpen our mind and boost our memory. Part One of the book introduces the reader to The 7-Day Get Sharp Plan, while Part Two focuses on The 7-Week Stay Sharp Plan.


If you are not into reading, there are other things you can do for brain fitness.


Add brain-food to your diet. Antioxidents, omega-3 fatty acids, unsaturated fats, fruits, vegatables, and moderate alcohol consumption are all linked to a healthy brain.



Exercise regularly. You don't have to join a gym. Try walking more, using the stairs, doing housework and babysitting toddlers! Better still, take up qigong or tai-chi which combines both physical exercise and mental relaxation /meditation.


Doing qigong in Lake Gardens.


Learn new skills - photography, calligraphy, line-dancing (even lion-dancing!). I find blogging, including doing research for the articles, mentally and intellectually stimulating.


Line-dancing can be both fun and good for health.


Do something different for a change. If you have always avoided taking public transport, try it. Take the bus or train to town. Participate in a competition. Give a speech. Climb a mountain.


Giving a public talk.

Challenge your mental agility by doing crossword puzzles and sudoku. In China, mahjong is very popular with the seniors as it encourages thinking as well as keeps the fingers flexible. Electronic games are fast gaining popularity too. A 30-minute game of tennis on my grandson's Wii can leave me sweating and panting for breath!


Seniors enjoying a game of mahjong.


Sweating it out in a game of Wii.



Sudoku can be mentally challenging.

Exercise the brain by doing crossword puzzles.


Our brain cells are like muscles - use them or lose them!

5 comments:

Burung Hantu said...

Another very important factor which can help the aging brain cells is Glutathione. I had my Immunocal every morning to help my body build it's own Glutathione.

The Runner, Dreamer, Observer, Seeker said...

My mom is 76 this year and has been suffering Alzheimers for 3 years already. Hers is ue to some depression and lack of exercise. I found your blog so inspiring!
Yes, exercise is very important and the 2 persons you place under 'seniors in the news' : Adnan Osman & Yee Sze Mun are my friends. Both in their 60's & 70's but extremely fit & fabulous. I must compliment that you look very youthful yourself!
Keep it up...

el-f said...

Thanks for the tip. Will read up on glutathione.

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Martin Walker said...

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