The Center for Brain/Mind Medicine > Keys to Healthy Living
Lifestyle Changes to Boost Resilience
You can improve your brain’s resilience to a neurologic disease by attending to lifestyle factors that promote brain health. Research has shown that what you eat and drink, how much you exercise, how well you sleep, the way you socialize, and how you manage stress are all critically important to your brain health.
The Pillars of Brain Health
Exercise improves blood flow and stimulates chemical changes in the brain that enhance learning, mood, and thinking.
Food & Nutrition
Harmful stress due to age, disease, lifestyle, and environmental factors can result in a process called oxidation, which damages brain cells. Foods rich in antioxidants can help counteract the effects of oxidation in the brain.
Sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout our lives. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times protects brain health in many ways. While you sleep, your brain is preparing for the next day. It’s forming new pathways to help you learn and remember information. Sleep helps your brain work properly.
Mental exercise is just as important as physical exercise in keeping your brain fit and healthy. Find something you love, whether traditional or online games, a new hobby or skill, or taking a class. New activities help your brain form new connections and strengthen existing ones.
Spending time with others, engaging in stimulating conversation, and staying connected to family and friends are good for your brain health. Research shows that people with the most social interaction experience the slowest rates of memory decline.