lifestyle

14 Weird Brain Exercises That Help You Get Smarter

Play “10 Things” istock/BigRedCurlyGuy Forcing your brain to think of alternates to the everyday will help keep it strong. Brain exercise: Someone hands you an ordinary object, and you must demonstrate 10 different “things” that the object might be. For example, a fly swatter might be a tennis racket, a golf club, a fan, a baton, a drumstick, a violin, a shovel, a microphone, a baseball bat, or a canoe

12 Brain-Boosting Secrets from a Memory Champion

Remember where you parked Adam Hayes/Courtesy Remember It! For example, if you leave your car in a big parking garage, you’ll need to remember which level to come back to. If it’s level 4, Dellis says to turn that number into an image—SEE a sailboat, which will remind you of the way the numeral 4 looks. Next, you have to LINK the sailboat to a mental image of your car,

This Body Part Ages Faster Than the Rest of You

Don’t worry, it’s not by much. oneinchpunch/Shutterstock The thought of aging is a major stress factor for many people, perhaps even more so than the physical act of aging. If you are one of those people, brace yourself. Your head is actually aging faster than the rest of you. Before you freak out, though, know that it’s only by nanoseconds—90 billionths of a second over 79 years, to be exact.

The Real Reason Some People Hate the Sound of
Chewing

Good news: If you hate the sound of heavy breathing or slurping soup, you’re not going crazy. It’s actually a sign that you’re super smart! Danil Nevsky/shutterstock Can’t stand loud breathing? Does the sound of someone smacking gum next to you make your blood boil? Turns out, you’re not alone—and there’s a genuinely scientific reason why. If you cringe when someone cracks their knuckles, you might want to get checked out

15 Memory Exercises Proven to Keep Your Brain Sharp

Simple ways to ward off dementia, prevent cognitive decline, and improve your brainpower—in just one day. Draw a map Jacob Lund/shutterstock Research shows that building a mental map is a serious brain-booster. Cab drivers in London, for example, are required to memorize 25,000 streets and 20,000 landmarks in order to qualify for a license. But new geography skills aren’t the only perk; neurologists at the University of London found that

This Is Why Reading Is So Important for Your Brain

Reading isn’t just filling your head—it’s nourishing it. This is the latest science on the magic of books. Matthew Cohen/rd.com, Apple by Aguiardesign You can take fish oil supplements or eat lots of turmeric. You can invest in a language class, puzzle books, or a few hours of exercise every week. There are countless methods to (allegedly) improve your memory and cognitive functioning—the brain-training and -assessment industry is expected to

15 Habits You Never Knew Were Aging Your Brain

From the walk you skipped this morning to the snacks you’ll have before bedtime, your daily choices may have a big impact on your risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Here are the top ways you’re speeding the decline of your mind. You’re not taking steps to save your mind Goran Bogicevic/Shutterstock There’s no getting around the fact that normal aging brings brain changes that slow cognitive function: Some

This Is What Happens to Your Brain on a Diet

TijanaM/shutterstock There are countless dieting tips, tricks, recipes, and meal plans available in a single Google search, all promoting different ways to lose weight. But beyond the hacks, what you eat and the amount you eat are affected by more than just your degree of motivation and the desire to look good. Even if you’re on a diet plan meant to help you lose weight fast, sometimes it’s still a

25 Brain-Boosting Foods That Will Keep You Sharp

You can stay sharp by being active and engaged in the world around you—but you can also keep your brain healthy by eating these amazing foods. Berries Bojsha/Shutterstock Those strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries? They’ll do wonders for your health and your noggin. “Large studies show some promise for berries and brain health, particularly in slowing cognitive decline,” says Ginger Hultin, RD, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

15 Everyday Habits of People with an Impressive
Memory

Exercise daily 9dream studio/Shutterstock The physical and the mental are deeply connected, so exercise keeps your brain sharp by avoiding memory suckers like high blood pressure and diabetes. “Movement improves circulation, bringing blood, oxygen, and nutrients to the brain, which can help to ensure it is functioning at its peak,” says fitness and nutrition expert Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, author of 2 Day Diabetes Diet. “Studies have found an improvement