ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

4 Simple Ways to Keep Your Brain Healthy

Updated on September 26, 2018
I am Super-Brain
I am Super-Brain

The Three Pound Universe

The fitness of your brain depends upon your health, both emotional and physical. Keeping yourself relaxed and stress free is the best way to keep this most vital organ healthy. The three-pound supercomputer called brain is the oldest marvel of nature. It has survived numerous cycles of destruction and constructions of human civilization since ages. Even now the best super computer assembled by the latest digital assets is nowhere as creative or as resourceful as the intelligence of the ensemble of tiny neurons in the human head.

Brain is an intelligent organ that grows by interaction with the outside world. It is capable of continually adapting. Even in old age, it can grow new neurons. Although diseases frequently lead to cognitive decline, inactivity – both physical and mental – is the most common cause of age-related loss of functioning. In other words, use it or lose it.

Throughout life, your neural networks reorganize themselves in response to new stimuli and experiences. This is what stimulates brain cells to grow and connect with each other in complicated ways. This is the structural basis of your brain's memorizing power and thinking ability. As a product of its environment, your "three pound universe" is essentially an internal reflection of your interaction with the external world.

Don't disturb me
Don't disturb me

Warning - Couch Potatoes

All the labor-saving conveniences provided by technology is increasing the population of couch potatoes in the society. A sedentary lifestyle severely deteriorates vascular system, which consequently tell on physical and mental health. The increasing penetration of computers, Internet, TV, and video games along with funding cuts and public apathy is slowly pushing us towards a real health crisis. A recent survey concluded that nearly half of youngsters (12 – 21 years) do not participate in vigorous physical activity on a regular basis.

Brain Plasticity

The tendency to shape itself according to experience – is the most important quality of the human brain. Plasticity is the inherent drive that creates neural networks that gives you adaptability and versatility. Without plasticity you won’t be able to survive in the fast changing world. Lack of plasticity means rigidity – rigidity of attitudes, likes and dislikes, preferences and prejudices. The best-developed human brain is most fluid and most moldable.

The Mind Body Connection

The Neuromuscular Junction

Neurons connects not only among themselves, but to muscles as well. (Otherwise you won’t be able to move any part of your body!). They connect to the muscles at a specialized structure called neuromuscular junction. Here the brain talks to the muscles through a chemical known as acetylcholine. Another chemical messenger, dopamine, fine-tunes precision of the muscular motion. Here is how deep body massage or whole body workouts gives massage to your brain also.

Don't You Know Me?
Don't You Know Me?

Brain Facts

  • 750-1000 ml (or 3 full soda cans) of blood flow through the brain every minute.
  • The human brain has about 100 billion neurons. Diameter of a neuron is between 4 to 100 microns.
  • Once a human reaches the age of 35, he/she will start losing approximately 7,000 brain cells a day. The cells will never be replaced.
  • From all the oxygen that a human breathes, twenty percent goes to the brain – 6% is used by the white matter and 94% by the gray matter.
  • Your brain is move active and thinks more at night than during the day.
  • It is not possible to tickle yourself. The cerebellum, a part of the brain, warns the rest of the brain that you are about to tickle yourself. Since your brain knows this, it ignores the resulting sensation.
  • How much does human brain think? An average 70,000 thoughts per day.
  • 89.06% people write with their right hand, 10.6% with their left and 0.34% with either hand.

4 Ways to Keep Your Brain Healthy

The health of your brain vitally depends upon your mental and physical health. Physical health means well nourished muscles, bones and organs as well as strong immune system. Mental health vitally depends on your emotional health. It implies freedom from emotional wounds, set of healthy attitudes and beliefs, and a relaxed and confident mind.

1. Whole Body Workout

If you ever thought how physical exercises are going to help the brain think about the neuromuscular junctions described above. Fitness boot camps where you do a variety of body weight exercises are ideal – your aim is not to develop more muscles but to work through what you already have. Doing a lot of yoga postures briskly is another good alternative. An open outdoor space is ideal so that you can take in plenty of oxygen – a healthy dose of oxygen with blood supply is rejuvenating for brain cells.

Brain Quotes

There is no evidence that the tongue is connected to the brain.
- Frank Tyger

Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habit of thinking.
- Albert Einstein

The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.
- George Jessel

I believe in an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out.
- Arthur Hays Sulzberger

This website is the brainchild of my brainchild, Ryan. It is my brain-grandchild.
- Michael Scott

What do you think?

Brain and Mind are just the same thing.

See results

2. Break Your Routine

Falling in the rut (and living there!) is the best way to disrespect your brain. Doing the same things over and over again in the same routine way is adding further insult to disrespect. Doing things in non-routine ways challenges the existing neural network to perform and stimulates creation of new connections. So keep challenging your brain to learn new skills, particularly those you have never tried before.

However, it does not mean that you start walking backwards or start breathing from the mouth and plug your nose!!

There are sane ways to stimulate and challenge your brain. Here are some ideas:

  • Try controlling the mouse or TV remote from the other hand,
  • Try combing your hair without looking into the mirror or comb using the other hand,
  • Switch hand to hold fork and knife and eat,
  • Brush your teeth using the other hand,
  • Try writing or painting with the other hand,
  • Shop at a new grocery store,
  • If you normally walk at a slow pace, try walking briskly,
  • Take a different route to your office,
  • Join a dance class if you can’t dance,
  • Can you play guitar? No, start learning. Yes, learn flute or drum.
  • Solve puzzles, play chess and brain-games. And so on.

If you felt uncomfortable or awkward don’t worry – that’s how you feel when the brain is learning. When you are doing things habitually, brain goes into neutral. You can invent more such activities, the idea is to do things that force you to break from the routine.

When you do such non-routine activities, apart from feeling awkward you will discover another vital thing – you become consciously aware of what you are doing. You can’t afford not to pay attention if, for example, you are writing with the hand you are not used to. Developing this awareness and sustaining makes you alert and "live".

Staying with natural Breathing
Staying with natural Breathing

3. Develop Mindfulness

Mindfulness or mindful awareness is the basic tool for any self-improvement. You can't change anything if don’t “know” what is happening? This “knowing” is important – it is awareness, attentiveness or mindfulness. This is opposite of “absent mindedness”. Developing this faculty of mind automatically helps coming out of the habit of doing things habitually or mechanically.

The traditional way is to practice mindfulness meditation. You can practice meditating on breathing – the natural breathing. It is a very simple exercise that anyone can do. All you have to do is just observe your natural breathing without regulating or changing it in anyway.

Brainy Quotes

Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.
- Albert Einstein

A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.
- William James

Some people are afraid of heights. Not me, I'm afraid of widths.
- Steven Wright

I was thrown out of college for cheating on the metaphysics exam; I looked into the soul of the boy next to me.
- Woody Allen

Why is it when we talk to God we’re praying, but when God talks to us, we’re schizophrenic?
- Lily Tomlin

4. Use Brainwave Technology for Brain Development

This is a recent development that is fast picking up and gives you all round and wholesome benefits. Repeated listening to low frequency entrainment audios leads to a mind with heightened awareness. With this awakened mind, you begin to perceive things from a different angle and with new wholesome meaning.

Your entire body becomes charged with a new energy and vitality. Many people also report a significant increase in the sex drive. You are renewed, more alert, and are highly confident – without the pullbacks of the usual fears and anxieties. This enlightened state of awareness is significantly different from the previous “limited mind” which could only do few things in limited ways. So, you have a “new self” now.

What causes the feeling of high and peak experiences? The neuroscientists say that the euphoria or 'high' you experience is caused by the release of endorphins in the brain, which is far more powerful than morphine.

Brain Hemispheric Integration

Studies have shown that people suffering from high stress, anxiety attacks, and insomnia have their left and the right hemispheres functioning out of sync. In other words, their brains are highly lateralized and are not using the full capacity of the full brain. Accessing deeper states of consciousness and lowering brainwave frequencies directly correlate with higher levels of whole brain functioning.

Regular listening to brainwave entrainment audios have been known to increase brain hemisphere integration through creation of new neural pathways between the two hemispheres. In addition, the low frequency entrainment audios also promote release of human growth hormone that decrease with age and other chemicals that promote relaxation and stress relief. Include stress relief and meditation audios in your routine.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Sembj profile image

      Sembj 

      7 years ago

      As a teenager I remember reading Edward de Bono`s first book on lateral thinking many years ago. He contributed a great deal to the field of thinking based on his theories of mind - interesting stuff and not dissimilar to much of what is discussed in your section on breaking routine. I will be looking into your other suggestions in more detail. Again, thanks for the stimulating article - I am signing up to follow your writing.

    • Goodpal profile imageAUTHOR

      Goodpal 

      7 years ago

      Thanks Sembj, for liking the article. The whole Idea is get away from the habitual way of doing things. Mind needs some change and think the best nourishments for mind is change and challenges. So, if you are using the other hand for mouse, another set of signals through new set of neurons is reaching the brain, which the mind likes.

      Have a Nice Day.

    • Sembj profile image

      Sembj 

      7 years ago

      Another article that's well written, interesting and useful - thanks again. (I'm using my mouse in a different hand to usual!)

    • gpinheiro profile image

      gpinheiro 

      8 years ago from Portugal

      Hi Goodpal,

      First of all thank you for your comment on my untidy mind that led me to read this hub. I am going to try some of yr tips as I have always been a person that are not able to relax. My shoulders are always "up" and i cant relax.

      Thanks.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)