Brain Health

Brain Health

Engage Your Brain

Overview

The most complex organ in your body, your brain controls every aspect of your life, and is always changing. As we experience the world, practice new habits, and learn new information, our minds undergo what is known as “brain plasticity,” or the ability to grow and even repair connections in the brain.

A holistic view of brain health includes both the emotional and physical qualities of the brain, and your lifestyle has a profound impact on overall brain health. Download our entire Brain Health Toolkit here, and try incorporating these six tips into your daily routine to optimize brain health.


Listen to “Eskaton Talks Brain Health” with Therese ten Brinke and Catherine Graham.
 

THINK Healthy – A Brain Health Booklet Brain Health Booklet


Train Your Brain​

Resident painting a picture

  • Brain-stimulating activities promote healthy connections between nerve cells and even help generate new ones!
  • Solve a brain teaser, work on a crossword or Sudoku puzzle, or learn a new language to sustain and even improve cognitive ability.
  • Activities that use your hands as well as your mind—like drawing or playing an instrument—can also improve brain health.  

 

 

Move and Groove​

Residents walking - only their legs showing

  • Physical exercise is not only beneficial for maintaining a healthy weight and strong heart.
  • Engage in 30 minutes of regular movement every day.
  • Movement helps you elevate your heart rate and increases blood flow to the brain and body.

 

 

Eat to Think

Healthy foods and grains

  • Embrace a “Mediterranean-style” diet that includes large amounts of fruits, vegetables, fish, nuts, and unsaturated fats like olive oil.
  • Swap out meat for plant-based protein sources or fish.
  • Avoid excessive drinking and foods high in sodium foods.

 

 

Connect to Protect

Resident socializing

  • Remain socially connected to other people to support healthy brain function.
  • Socialization is vital for maintaining a positive outlook on life and reducing the risk of depression, which is a major risk factor of cognitive change.             
  • Studies show the more connected someone is to their community, the better their ability to preserve cognitive function and retain memory.

 

 

Dream Team

comfortable bed with several pillows

  • Sleep is essential for brain health. When you sleep, your brain processes all that it learned that day, and develops new strategies for conquering old problems.
  • Try creating a nighttime routine that will help you prepare for sleep.
  • Get at least 7 to 9 hours of uninterrupted sleep every night.

 

 

Be MINDful

Resident playing dominoes

  • Stress can negatively impact your brain and can have a detrimental effect on your memory.
  • Learn to manage your stress by practicing mindfulness or meditation.
  • Seek out places where you feel at peace, whether that be church or a park bench. A positive mindset will go far in keeping your brain hearty and healthy.

 

 


Having a Purpose has a Purpose

Researchers have long acknowledged the correlation between staying happy and staying healthy, but recent studies suggest an even more compelling relationship – having a purpose in life and sustaining cognitive function as you age.

The data shows that people with a well-defined sense of meaning in their lives had a 15% lower risk of death over a 15-year period, and those didn’t were nearly 40% more Linda sitting in a park smilinglikely to die of cardiovascular disease. While purpose-driven individuals are more likely to exercise on a regular basis and have healthier diets, those studying the link between brain health and a life with purpose say there’s a much deeper connection.

Linda Whiteside, Eskaton employee, artist, and humanitarian, found her life’s purpose through her art and working with Eskaton’s Telephone Reassurance Program. Every day she surrounds herself with meaningful activities that spark joy, whether providing companionship to an older adult over the phone, or immersing herself in the world of ceramics. Read her whole story here.
 


In the Blog

The latest in brain health.

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Disclaimer: The information provided is for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical, financial, health, social and environmental advice.

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