By Cheryl Ellis, Staff Writer
Brain foods and brain vitamins
have naturally led to brain stimulating exercises. It’s
considered “old news” that anagrams and crossword
puzzles help the brain work out. A new frontier is
emerging; our search for healthier brains has led to
development of software programs and other technology to
improve brain function.
Every time we learn something
new, our brain grows new tissue. Some things as common
as figuring out how to program a DVD or use a new cell
phone help keep the brain in condition. Yet, just like
an individual goes to the exercise club, folks log on to
programs to exert mental energy.
A POUND OF BRAINS,
If we could order another
helping of brain mass to replace what we perceive is
deteriorating daily, mental and emotional stress would
be less of a concern. Proper foods, rest and other
factors help maintain the approximately three pounds the
human brain weighs.
We can “order up” more brains to
replace the parts that naturally die off by
incorporating activities that stimulate the brain. We
keep the new parts functional and working by continuing
PUT YOUR BRAIN ON A
The stack of bills and the
number of phone calls needing to be returned all add up
to brain “fat.” While the bills and phone calls have a
priority, you can’t accomplish them if your mental
functions aren’t up to it. Enter the “smart diet.”
Take a look at how you are
processing the things you need to do. By getting your
brain to work a little differently, you may find that
the drain you’ve experienced with these tasks is because
you’re doing them the “same old way.”
Caregivers work long and hard to
establish productive ways that can accomplish what they
need to do for themselves and their loved ones. While
set patterns can improve efficiency, if done the same
way for too long, the patterns become a rut.
Examine where the “fat” is in
your daily routine. While not a patented form of brain
exercise, it’s a simple, inexpensive way to boost your
brain. The trick is to look at your routine from a
different perspective. You may find you save minutes in
places you didn’t expect.Or, while it may take longer to
accomplish something (like a loved one’s grooming), a
change in perspective may make the experience more
BUT IS IT GOOD FOR ME?
Mental exertion can be positive
and invigorating. We don’t often experience that as
caregivers, however. Some decisions that must be thought
about carefully often come at us from left field.
Repeatedly making decisions this way can wear us down.
At the day’s end, we may be both mentally and physically
exhausted, unable to decide between one thing and