Worried about ‘mommy brain’? Here are 7 ways to keep your mind sharp

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Keep your mind sharp and brain healthy throughout motherhood with these simple tips!

Postnatal forgetfulness, or what is commonly known as 'mommy brain' or momnesia, affects many moms. If you're reading this, then chances are you have experienced this, too.

According to recent studies, sleep deprivation may be a huge contributing factor. For new moms, it may be even more of a struggle to adjust to the mental and emotional overload that often comes with the responsibility of nurturing and nourishing a newborn.

For some moms, this period of forgetfulness fads after their baby turns a year old. If you're a new mom, don't be too hard on yourself. Find ways to celebrate the little things. Give yourself the credit you deserve and don't feel bad when you tend to forget things. Establish a routine and write down constant reminders.

Use this time to build up your memory and keep your mind sharp. Here are 7 tips you can try, which not only keep your brain healthy, it could help prevent heart disease and cognitive impairment in the future!

1. Maintain a healthy blood pressure

Though the ideal blood pressure is 120/80, it can also be considered normal to get a 110/70 or 130/90 reading, depending on what your usual rate is. Though getting 130-140/90-100 is bordering on high. To manage this, make sure to eat a healthy diet and get enough exercise.

2. Control cholesterol consumption

Minimizing your cholesterol consumption helps keep your brain and body healthy. About 25% of our body's cholesterol is found in the brain. It helps protect and regulate the brain's components that are responsible for thinking, moving, and feeling (sensation).

3. Keep blood sugar normal

Sugar, or glucose, helps our body's cells function. Our capacity to learn, think, and remember things is aided by healthy nerve cells in our brain. In order to maintain proper communication and functioning, these cells needs a healthy dose of glucose. Hypoglycemia has been linked to poor memory, inattention, and impaired brain function.

4. Get active

Exercising contributes greatly to brain health. It helps pump more oxygen to the brain; it also stimulates the proliferation of brain cells and hormones essential to overall health and well-being.

5. Eat healthy

Getting the right nourishment helps your mind function better. Make sure your diet is packed with protein, iron, zinc, selenium, iodine, folate, and vitamin A for optimum neurological function.

6. Lose those extra pounds

It's no secret that maintaining a healthy body weight offers a wide array of benefits. But did you know that, on top of all of that, it could also sharpen brain function? Recent research has found that losing weight helps improve memory and attention. It also lessens the risk of Alzheimer's, dementia, and stroke.

7. Quit smoking, if you do

Smoking increases the risks for many diseases, such as heart-related ailments. It hardens the arteries, inhibiting cardiovascular function. It also has been found to "shrink the brain" because it causes essential tissues to thin over time.

This thinning affects cognitive function and spatial reasoning. What's more, smoking's harmful effects on respiration causes lessened oxygen in the brain, which can seriously damage the brain's cortex, the outermost layer that protects its most essential parts.

sources: Medical Daily, Fit Pregnancy, Harvard Health, Harvard Medical School, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, TIME, Men's Health

READ: My sharp memory is now just a memory: The cause and cure of post-natal forgetfulness

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