Whether you are a student preparing for exams, a working professional or a senior citizen, having a good memory power and concentration is very important. If you are looking for ways to sharpen your memory, boost mental performance, and increase concentration levels, you’ve come to the right place. Here is how to improve memory and concentration.
Tips and Tricks for a Better Memory
To strengthen your brain and improve memory, you need to work on a few things. Here are some easy tips and tricks for better memory.
- Minimize distractions
- Talk aloud to yourself
- Carry a portable notebook and fill it with your to-do-lists
- Sleep well
- Understand your own style of learning
How to Improve Memory and Concentration While Studying?
Improve your memory and concentration with these tips.
Try abbreviations and acronyms
If you constantly have trouble in memorizing something while studying try using mnemonic devices such as abbreviations and acronyms.
Abbreviations and acronyms are nothing but the shortened form of a word or phrase. They help you boost your ability to remember information quickly. These mnemonic devices let your brain encode essential information in a unique way that helps you learn thoroughly.
Don’t google all the time
Modern technology is both a blessing and a curse. It has made most people out there mentally lazy. Whenever you want to retrieve some information, don’t go directly towards Google or Siri for help. Calm your mind and try to make a solid attempt to retrieve whatever information you want from your mind itself.
Staying organized is another important habit you should adopt if you wish to improve memory and concentration. For this, checklists can be considered as an excellent tool. Instead of depending on a smartphone for jotting down the checklists, try to write it down on a book or notepad. This is because, when you write down something, you tend to remember it better.
Write down the important points from each chapter. When you sit to study, go through the already written points once thoroughly and then start with a fresh topic. This is also one of the best ways to keep yourself motivated while studying.
Practice repetition and retrieving
Whenever you learn something, practice repetition and retrieving. This is because whenever you do this, you are more likely to mentally record that information.
When you repeat a particular sentence or a word, read out loud and write it down, the connection you create between the neurons becomes stronger. If you wish to have long term and meaningful learning experiences, repetition alone doesn’t work. For that, you have to sit back down later and try to retrieve the information without looking at your notes.
Before your next exam, make sure to try all the above-mentioned techniques to improve memory.
Natural Ways to Increase Memory Power and Concentration
Now that you know how to improve memory and concentration while studying, read on to know the natural ways to deal with the same.
1. Fish oil
Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids that improve brain function and development. In fact, it helps your nerve cells communicate better with each other.
Apart from improving memory, there are many amazing health benefits of fish oil. It promotes better sleep, improves heart health, reduces the production of IgE in asthma patients, manages blood pressure, improves skin health and even aids weight loss.
If you are not a big fan of oily fish or do not eat 1 to 2 portions of the same in a week, consider taking a fish oil supplement.
However, before consuming fish oil supplements, it is always recommended to seek medical advice from an expert doctor.
Berries are a great source of anthocyanins and other flavonoids that help to improve memory function. The antioxidants in berries act against both oxidative stress as well as inflammation and also improves the communication between the brain cells. It also increases plasticity, which helps the brain cells form new connections, improve learning and memory power.
You can enjoy a handful of berries mixed into cereal as a healthy snack.
This deep yellow spice has generated a lot of buzz recently, especially in the matter of improving memory (especially in people with Alzheimer’s disease) and concentration. Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, can directly enter your brain and benefits in the formation of new brain cells.
Other health benefits of turmeric include alleviating arthritis and joint pain, lowering blood pressure, and promoting weight loss. Turmeric is also one of the best home remedies for glowing skin.
Add turmeric to your dishes or drink turmeric tea to reap its full benefits.
4. Dark chocolate
The cocoa in dark chocolate contains flavonoid that can increase your memory and concentration levels. Since the brain is highly susceptible to oxidative stress which can contribute to brain diseases, these antioxidants are very important for the overall health of your brain.
The flavonoid encourages the neuron and blood vessel growth in parts of the brain that is involved in memory and learning. It may also help to stimulate blood flow in the brain.
Foods That Are Bad for Your Memory and Brain
Bad eating habits can negatively affect your memory power as well as your brain. This can even cause Alzheimer’s disease and other problems related to memory loss. By improving your daily diet by incorporating memory boosting foods and avoiding unhealthy foods, you can reduce your risk of having memory-related problems.
Here is a list of foods and drinks that are worst for your memory and brain.
Soy contains a much higher ratio of both salt and sodium, which is quite harmful to your memory. It can cause health issues such as hypertension which restricts blood flow to your brain. Regular consumption of soy leads to memory loss or problems related to organizational skills.
If you are an alcoholic, it is high time to stop this habit as it can have a long term effect on your brain. It can weaken your brain cells as well as cause memory loss.
Highly processed foods
Highly processed foods are those that are high in sugar, added fat, and salt. It includes sweets, instant noodles, ready-made foods and sauces, and packaged drinks. They are usually high in calories and very low in other nutrients. Processed foods can cause weight gain, which negatively impacts your memory power and brain health. They can even lead to brain inflammation and impair memory, learning ability, and brain plasticity.
High in carbs, white rice can cause problems such as memory loss and impacts mental functioning. It also increases your risk of having depression. For better health and memory, it is always recommended to switch to wheat products.
Loaded with proteins, tuna is generally considered as one of the best foods that promote overall health. But remember, tuna is healthy only if it is consumed in a moderate quantity. Excessive intake of this fish can cause a decline in the brain functioning and memory as it is rich mercury. If you wish to boost your memory, substituting tuna with salmon will be a healthy option.
If you have any queries regarding the best and worst foods for better memory, consider talking to a specialized doctor. You can also consult a doctor online.
Brain Exercises to Improve Memory and Concentration
In addition to eating healthy foods, you can keep your memory sharp by exercising your brain. Have a look at these simple and effective brain exercises that will help you improve memory and concentration.
- Tai chi
- Learn a new language
- Build vocabulary
- Do math in your head
- Play chess
- Try a new route
In addition to brain exercises, you should make it a habit to do physical exercises. Doing this can improve your mood and helps you get rid off unwanted stress that leads to poor memory.
All these exercises can also help you build a positive mindset during difficult times.
Other Methods to Improve Your Memory
Still looking for methods to improve your memory? We’ve got more in bag!
- Paint a picture in your head to make dates, names, and objects much easier to remember. For example, if you are someone finding it difficult to memorize a name and you meet a person named Christina, you should picture a “Christian going to a church”. Doing this in your mind can dramatically improve your memory and ability to recall things.
- Stop doing more than one thing at a time. Your brain actually doesn’t multitask; instead, it switches focus from one thing to the other, thereby negatively affecting your memory power. This is the reason why you find it difficult to read a book and watch tv at the same time. Multitasking will definitely slow you down, so consider it important to concentrate on one task at a time.
- Reduce stress. If you want to improve your memory and remember things better, stop getting too stressed. Even if you are having a tight schedule, try to spend some time for yourself. Stress can contribute to memory loss and can even destroy your brain cells.
If you are finding it difficult to improve memory and concentration even after trying all these methods, fret not! Our expert doctors are always here to help you.