Key lifestyle habits that can help keep your brain healthy

The relationships between our brain and body and the world around us are complex. What you do or don’t do can significantly change how your health and wellbeing.

A healthy brain is determined by both biological and physiological factors — genes, hormones, the immune system, nutrition, exercise, and other lifestyle choices.

Social, psychological and environmental factors including relationships, stress, emotions, mindset, life events and current circumstances also contribute to your brain health.

A healthy brain doesn’t overlook or underappreciate quality sleep and “wakeful rest”

“Without good sleep, we see increased anxiety and stress. Sleep is restorative, helping you be more mentally energetic and productive,” advises Sandra Bond Chapman, Ph.D., founder and chief director of the Center for BrainHealth at the University of Texas at Dallas and author of Make Your Brain Smarter.

Apart from getting a good and quality night sleep, make time for “wakeful rest” — it pays to plan breaks in between your busy schedule. Plan downtime on your calendar.

After a busy day, give your brain time to recover — sit back, close your eyes and let your mind wander (spontaneous thought in our wakeful life) — in the knowledge that your brain is busy consolidating information.

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Published on Medium Feb. 17, 2020