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Maintain Your Memory

Stimulate Your Brain
Good memory depends on good emotional and physical well-being. Leading a full and active life is the most important way to benefit the aging brain. There are things you can do to prevent memory loss or to manage it even if you are beginning to experience some forgetfulness. In many cases, you can enhance memory simply through the way you live, how you treat your body, what you eat and drink, and what you do for exercise—both physically and mentally.

Make Memories Last a Lifetime
Memory isn't just comprised of your personal history; it's also your brain's ability to piece together appropriate sets of information in order to perform simple daily activities. There are things that can interfere with your memory, like illness, stress, and fatigue, but those things are manageable. There are several strategies you can use to help prevent memory loss or to manage it.

A healthy body helps maintain a healthy mind

  • Limit your alcohol intake
  • Eat a diet low in cholesterol
  • Limit the salt you eat to 1,500 mg/day
  • Take your medication as prescribed. Every time
  • Exercise for 30 minutes a day, most days of the week

Your brain needs a workout too

  • Read challenging information
  • Do crossword puzzles, brain teasers, and word problems
  • Play games like chess, bridge, Sudoku, and Scrabble®
  • Go to the theater and museums
  • Join a book club
  • Try a new recipe
  • Learn a new language
  • Go back to school or take a seminar
  • Plan a do-it-yourself project
  • Use technology; don't be intimidated

Some forgetfulness is normal as you age. Consider using your cell phone alarm to remind you to take your medication, or leave a note on your door listing what you need to take when you leave the house. Put things in highly visible locations, and designate a regular spot for important items, like your keys. Make notes in your calendar and make to-do lists. Start journaling. These techniques can help you manage your daily tasks, and you should feel comfortable using any or all of them.

Most importantly, stay physically active, socially connected, and intellectually stimulated every day to maintain effective cognitive function, even into old age.

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