Take Care of your Headspace

by Valerie Demetros

Taking care of your heart, digestive system and fitness all play an important role in staying strong and happy. But your brain’s physical and mental well-being are just as important if you want to live a long and healthy life.

Here are a few ways to start focusing on your physical and mental headspace.

Get Some Sleep — By improving sleep quality, you can improve your mental health and reduce feelings of depression, anxiety and stress. Until recently, researchers assumed mental health difficulties led to sleep problems. However, a recent study revealed that improving sleep quality can actually improve your mental health.

There are a few ways to help improve sleep naturally such as finding a nightly ritual, taking a warm bath/shower at night, turning off electronics an hour before bed and taking GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) hormones and lavender pills. If you’re still having trouble, consult with your physician to see what options are out there.

Improve your Focus — As you age, you can get distracted much easier. This can be due to many factors including underlying health issues, depression, sleep disorders, medication side effects or just information overload.

Even hearing or sight problems can lead to distractions.

If you find yourself having trouble focusing, talk to your doctor to make sure there are no physical problems or medication side effects. It’s also important to keep your mind active with puzzles and word games (join the Wordle craze) as well as meditation and yoga.

Try a new hobby to stimulate your mind, take a college course or volunteer your time.

Fuel your Body — Making sure you are eating healthy can lead to fewer headaches as well as better concentration. For those with migraines, studies suggest diet plays a major role in managing them.

Aim for foods rich in magnesium including dark leafy greens, avocado and tuna as well as omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon, seeds and legumes.

Research also indicates that a keto diet can help reduce migraines; these are foods that are low in carbs and high in fat like seafood, eggs and nonstarchy vegetables.

Stay Hydrated — Not only does staying hydrated keep you healthy but it can also lead to fewer headaches. The National Institutes of Health report that problems with cognitive performance follow even mild dehydration and show in poor concentration, increased reaction time and short-term memory problems. It can also lead to moodiness and anxiety.

Boost your Mental Health — There are a few things you can do to boost your mental well-being: simple actions with a big impact.

For instance, get out and meet new people. Combine that with staying active whether that’s hitting the gym, playing golf or walking daily. Your body needs to move and in turn will reward you with a clear mind and better focus.