Making Brain Healthy Decisions Part 1
The quality of your decisions determines your success in all that you do which is why one of the 12 steps of our program focuses specifically on improving the your decision making abilities. To get started, here are 8 tips you can use to help you make better brain healthy decisions every day:
1. When your brain is troubled, you are much more likely to act in impulsive, careless ways that put you at risk for illness and early death. When your brain works right, you are more likely to act in thoughtful, conscientious ways that help you live longer. Prioritize your brain health and better behavior will follow
2. Nothing is more important to your health than the quality of the decisions you make in your life. And the quality of your decisions is a direct reflection of the physical health of your brain. Taking time to look at and upsize your brain health may be the most important decision you make to live strong and long.
3. Decreased activity in the prefrontal cortex has been associated with lack of forethought and poor judgment. When it does not get enough blood flow, you don’t have a good working brake on your impulses. Increasing blood flow to this area with brain-healthy habits, along with supplements, such as green tea and rhodiola, will help a person make better decisions, leading to a longer and happier life
4. Head injuries, even minor concussions from the past, show up on SPECT scans and may affect your behavior and feelings years later. We often have to ask people many times, “Have you ever had any sort of injury to your head?” before they recall the incident that hurt their brain. Recognizing and rehabilitating these injuries will dramatically increase the quality of all of your decisions.
5. Addictions, including drug, food and sexual addictions, are made worse when we literally “wear out” the brain’s pleasure centers by the constant exposure to highly stimulating activities, such as video games, text messaging, sexting, internet pornography, and scary movies. Take inventory of the adrenaline producing activities in your life: eliminate unhealthy ones, take breaks with activities (even good ones) that are becoming compulsive.
6. An overly optimistic worry-free, attitude (without forethought and planning which are prefrontal cortex activities) lead people to underestimate risks and approach them in lackadaisical fashion, decreasing longevity. Be optimistic, as this is good for longevity; but balance this trait with a healthy level of anxiety and careful thinking.
7. People who are persistent achievers with stable families, habits, routines did the best in longevity studies. Consider your daily and weekly routines: can you make them more brain-friendly? For example, can you walk somewhere that you always drive? Can you exchange an hour of TV for playing brain games?
8. To make better decisions make sure to optimize the blood flow to your brain by stabilizing you blood sugar (make sure you eat healthy and often), getting good sleep, limiting alcohol and caffeine, and eliminating nicotine.
To learn more on how to make better brain healthy decisions, or to start optimizing the health of your brain right now, please visit www.mybrainfitlife.com.