Jul 5, 2011 by Carrie Gajowski, MA

Brain health

As the webinar coordinator here at Scientific Learning, I hosted yet another fascinating webinar about brain health with Dr. Paul Nussbaum in early May called “ Brain Health Across the Lifespan”.  Dr. Nussbaum combined humor with interesting facts about the brain and the webinar ended up being one of our best sessions to date.  He provided a simple yet comprehensive look at the brain and how it functions. 

One interesting story Dr. Nussbaum shared was about the development and eventual delaying of the onset of Alzheimer’s disease based on lifestyle choices.  He cited research that has been done at autopsy that shows that there can be evidence of Alzheimer’s disease in the brain that has never manifested in memory problems during a person’s life.   

Dr. Nussbaum concluded that if you look at the individual’s life, you might find that they had a higher education level or more demanding occupation or participated in complex and varied activities throughout life, building up a stronger and more “fit” brain and delaying the onset of the disease.

He then covered 5 important aspects to brain health and suggested some activities that can keep your brain fit and healthy throughout your lifetime:

  1. Nutrition:  Eat more “good” fats including Omega-3 fatty acids, more fruits and vegetables, and fewer “bad” fats and processed foods. 
  2. Socialization:  Stay involved with life and develop a personal mission and hobbies along with building networks of family and friendships.
  3. Physical Activity: Be mobile and active.  Walk, play, run, garden, exercise, bike, hike.  These activities can help reduce the risk of dementia later on in life.
  4. Mental Stimulation:  Learn a second language, learn sign language, travel, play board games, and either play or listen to music.
  5. Spirituality:  Slow down, meditate, and learn relaxation procedures.  Identify what your stressors are and how they affect you and then identify ways to handle them.

To find out more about Brain Health, watch our previously recorded webinar or visit Dr. Nussbaum’s website.

Related Reading:

Lifelong Leaning and the Plastic Brain

Educating Kids about Nutrition and the Brain