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Mentalrobics™

You exercise your body to stay physically in shape, so why shouldn't you exercise your brain to stay mentally fit? With these daily exercises you will learn how to flex your mind, improve your creativity and boost your memory. As with any exercise, repetition is necessary for you to see improvement, so pick your favorite exercises from our daily suggestions and repeat them as desired. Try to do some mentalrobics every single day!

Most people know that the saturated and trans fats that are found in meats and processed foods are bad for their heart, but you may not know that they are also bad for your brain too! Unsaturated fats like those found in fish, nuts and most vegetable oils can actually improve your cognition. A recent study found that people who ate large quantities of saturated and trans fats had an increased risk of getting Alzheimer's disease. In the study, those people who ate the more unsaturated fats had a decreased risk of getting the disease.

In particular, eating fish has been showing to decrease Alzheimer's risk and protect other memory functions. This may be because fish are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to have beneficial effects on health.

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Vitamin B12 is a compound that is essential for proper brain functioning. This vitamin helps keep neurons healthy by maintaining the myelin sheath that protects the axons. Insufficient vitamin B12 can cause serious and permanent damage to the neurons, which can lead to memory loss, fatigue and slowed thinking.

Vitamin B12 is found in fish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk and fortified breakfast cereals. Vegetarians and vegans should be careful to make sure they are getting enough B12 as part of their diet, or via supplements.

Age, smoking and drinking are all factors that contribute to deficiencies in vitamin B12, however it is possible for a deficiency to occur because of a problem absorbing the vitamin through digestion. If this is the case, eating more B12 will not help; the individual will need to get monthly injections.

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We're sorry to say that there is no "secret technique" or "quick fix" that will give you a miraculous memory. If you want to improve your memory ability, you are going to need to learn a variety of different techniques that you can apply to different situations. Just like you would pick a hammer (not a saw) to drive a nail, you'll need to pick the right memory tool for each memory task.

Some of the things that will affect which memory tool you choose are: How familiar with the topic are you? What are you trying to remember (names, facts, numbers, etc)? How specific does your memory need to be (concepts only, word-for-word)? How long do you need to remember this information?

We will present a tool for each situation, so if you practice our exercises, you will eventually have a complete tool chest of memory techniques.

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Memory is not a thing that you can measure. There is no single place in the brain where memories are stored or where remembering happens. You can't take an MRI of your brain, point to your memory, and say, "My, what a good memory I have!"

Memory is better thought of as a collection of behaviors that you use to organize information in your mind. So, when someone says that they have a "bad memory," what they are really saying is that they don't have a good process for storing and retrieving information. While there is some link between intelligence and memory ability, memory is mostly a learned skill and you can get better at it with practice.

Exercises designed to improve your memory are not trying to enlarge or strengthen any particular part of your brain. Instead, they are teaching you new behaviors and skills that can be used to organize information in your mind and improve your ability to recall this information rapidly and accurately.

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One way to remember a list of objects (like a grocery list) is to visualize each item in a particular place in your house.

For example, you may visualize the broccoli on your nightstand, the tomatoes in the sink, and the apples on the couch. When you need to remember the grocery list, picture yourself walking through the house and seeing all the objects in their unusual places.

Making associations like this will give your memory something to grab onto. It's much easier to remember tomatoes in your sink than it is to just remember tomatoes!

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