ARTICLE - August 6, 2014
5 Easy Brain Exercises You Can Do at Home
Losing cognitive function doesn’t have to be a normal part of aging.
According to Lawrence C. Katz, PhD, and Manning Rubin in their book, “Keep Your Brain Alive: 83 Neurobic Exercises to Help Prevent Memory Loss and Increase Mental Fitness,” there’s a lot you can do to help keep your brain fit and active, even while at home.
Here are five tips that may help to keep your brain in top form.
1. Brush teeth with your other hand.
Katz and Rubin mention that using the other hand engages other parts of the brain, which can result in a rapid and substantial expansion of the parts of the cortex that control and process tactile information from that hand.
2. Keep your eyes closed while showering.
You may more easily sense the varied textures of your body that you don't “see,” feeding new and different information to your brain. Try using just your tactile senses to locate the soap, shampoo and other items in the shower. (Be sure to use common sense to avoid burns or other injuries.)
3. Switch-up the morning routine.
By their nature, routine tasks tend not to stimulate and exercise the brain. Novel tasks associated with increased levels of brain activity can help to increase brain fitness. Try a different beverage, get dressed at a different time, watch a different TV channel or find other changes to “shake up” that automatic morning routine.
4. Flip familiar objects upside down.
Turn pictures, your clock, your calendar or other things upside down. (Don’t try this with an aquarium!) When these familiar objects are upside down, your brain may be stimulated to interpret the shapes, colors, and relationships in new ways.
5. Switch seats at the dinner table.
In many families, everyone has his or her own regular seat. However, human brains (like yours) benefit from new experiences. Switch seats to change your view and how you relate with others. Bizarre as it seems, even reaching for the salt and pepper from a different location may help to keep your brain seasoned and fit.