Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…

This popular recited quote from Finding Nemo, spoken by Dory, is known to have suffered from short-term memory loss. The audience finds humor in Dory’s lack of ability to retain new information in the film, but memory loss is no laughing matter. The consequences of memory loss are and can be detrimental to the reciprocating family. It’s essential to know the prevalence of memory loss and thus, take actions to improve memory at any age through dance, nutrition, and by reducing technology usage.   

Memory loss affects more people than just the older generations, especially in a world overwhelmed by stress and anxiety. In fact, both men and women between the ages of 18 and 39, according to Health article, reports already experiencing a decline in memory cognition with a prevalence of fourteen percent. The accumulated stress from one’s occupation, school, and relationships over the years are all contributing factors that begin to impair different aspects of the brain.18377-NRJTU3One of the simplest and more entertaining ways to improve one’s memory is to get active. By no means does this entice being obligated to go to the gym every day for high-intensity training or cross fit workouts, but rather through dancing. It’s through dancing that remains the key to a new and improved, high functioning memory. What better way to improve one’s memory than to dance like nobody’s watching to Michael Jackson’s classic hits, or finally learn the cha-cha-cha? Not only are you one step closer to impressing your friends the next time you hit the dance floor, but also enhancing the memory.

There are myriad forms of dancing that range from hip-hop, Greek dancing, to ballet. Each style of dancing requires physical movement while activating the muscles in the brain. There have been two studies conducted verifying the improvement of brain function by utilizing the cerebral and cognitive processes with muscle memory. In addition, ‘The Cognitive Benefits of Movement Reduction: Evidence From Dance Marking’ mentioned within the article, the benefits of using a technique known as ‘marking’. Marking allows for dancers to learn complex dance routines at a quicker pace than if used without marking. It simplifies the entire routine into manageable steps easier to learn, both improving concentration and overall memory.

 It’s essential to refuel the body after exercise with the proper amount of nutrients and incorporating foods such as blueberries, wild salmon, and avocados into a diet. Blueberries are super fruits which prevent from old-age conditions, Alzheimer’s and Dementia. In ‘Fourteen Foods Proven to Change Your Life’, Pratt, a staff at Scripps Memorial Hospital, concluded how this particular super fruit aids in protecting from oxidative stress. Blueberries can be consumed in any form and still offer the same benefits to its consumers. Avocados have similar benefits to those of blueberries. Despite avocados being high in fat, they are a monounsaturated fat and should be consumed for its benefits to lower blood pressure. Consuming these three highly recommended foods will contribute to brain health if consumed regularly and moderately.

Both older and younger generations rely on technology for business and school related work purposes. While the main purpose of technology is to enhance the quality of life, it also serves a negative purpose when the world becomes solely dependent on its users. Continuous hours spent on the Internet may be responsible for impacting attention span. As a result, adults before age 30, were forgetting simple tasks or were embarrassed by the fact they could not recall their names at business meetings. In the best interest of mental health, it’s advised to reduce the amount of time spent on technology each day.OIHEI61While mental health remains prevalent in today’s society, people of all ages have the opportunity of improving their memory before they experience the negative effects of memory loss. Stress is the leading cause of a decline in mental health, but taking steps to reduce stress is advisable. An effective stress reliever is dancing and is not as intense as running or high-intensity classes. Another example to reduce stress is to limit technology, whether it be on phone, television, or computer. Lastly, a well-balanced diet filled with super fruits, omega-3 from wild salmon, and high fatty foods in moderation will contribute to a new and improved memory. ‘Just keep dancing, just keep dancing…’ and your memory will thank you.

University of Kansas

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