Could our memory be over the hill before we ever hit our 40s? According to one report, the answer may be “yes.” A study by neuroscientists at MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital put nearly 50,000 people—age 10 to 89—to the test with several brainteasers designed to evaluate memory. According to the findings, while long-term memory increases until retirement age, short-term memory peaks between the ages of 25 and 35.
Don’t worry! It’s not all downhill from here. We can improve our memory, year after year, with these brain-boosting behaviours and wellness giveaways. Keep reading for 4 tips you and your staff can practice every day to improve memory.
- Physical fitness: Physical exercise improves memory and thinking in direct and indirect ways. Directly, it can reduce inflammation while promoting the growth of new blood vessels that feed brain cells. In fact, regions of the brain associated with verbal memory and learning can actually increase in volume with regular, moderate exercise. Indirectly, exercise improves mood and sleep while at the same time reducing stress and anxiety—all factors affecting memory and cognition. A wellness promotional product, such as a pedometer, is a great way to promote brain and body health. While 10,000 steps is the ultimate goal, any increase in steps can be beneficial.
- Brain exercise: Keeping brains active can help improve memory and cognition. Learning a new skill, watching a documentary, doing a crossword puzzle or Sudoku can help keep the brain strong. Provide your staff with wellness promotional products to help them flex their brain muscles—a Rubik’s® cube is a great brain booster.
- Healthy eating: Like most well-oiled machines, our brains require the proper fuel to function at peak performance. Diets rich in brain-boosting foods, such as blueberries, leafy greens, salmon, avocado, whole grains, nuts and seeds—and even dark chocolate—can increase brain health. Encourage employees to include these foods in their daily diets. Provide logo’d Salad-To-Go Containers to promote brain-nourishing lunches. Make your next potluck a salad bar. And provide two super foods in one with dark-chocolate almonds for dessert. Now that’s a wellness giveaway everyone will love!
- Aromatherapy: The use of essential oils can positively influence memory and focus. Aromatherapy blends that include rosemary, basil, sage and peppermint can help staff concentrate and improve retention. Try dropping some peppermint oil, known to awaken the mind and senses while improving memory, in your department’s oil diffuser.
Helping employees improve their memory with these brain boosters and wellness giveaways can have a positive effect for years to come. For best results, exercise the brain (both physically and mentally), nourish it with healthy eating and try aromatherapy to increase focus. Good luck and stay sharp!