Thinking is the basis of human life. At the same time, each person has situations when he is not too happy with his ingenuity when you need to learn a bunch of material for an exam or develop some large-scale project; you want to become a genius at least for a while.
Here are the ways to improve your brain’s higher cognitive functions.
Of course, constant lack of sleep and excessive consumption of coffee has not benefited anyone. Still, the short-term positive effects of caffeine have been reaffirmed by recent research: coffee does not just tone up. It helps to focus on time-consuming tasks and improves almost all IQ indicators, such as logical thinking or timing reactions.
Scientists emphasize – you shouldn’t think that caffeine makes you smarter, it just makes your brain work in a more efficient “emergency” mode, but constant overloads will surely backfire with quick fatigue in the future.
Allow yourself some wine
Over the long history of drinking, humankind has discovered many positive and negative effects of alcohol. Recent experiments by Norwegian scientists prove that people who regularly drink wine (in moderation), on average, show better indicators of cognitive functions on tests than those who abstain from alcohol; this pattern was especially pronounced in women.
Most researchers have recently talked about the beneficial effects of a small amount of wine on thinking, speech coherence, attention, and other higher mental processes. Fermented grape juice is believed to contain antioxidants that prevent brain aging, so, as Pliny, the Elder said, in vino veritas!
“Charge” from the Sun
Excess sunlight is terrible for your skin, but you shouldn’t altogether avoid sun exposure – vitamin D is good for the brain.
Scientists set up an experiment and found that sunbathers performed better on the test tasks than volunteers with low vitamin D.
As suggested by some researchers, vitamin D can slow down the brain’s aging process, so if you are not a vampire, you can safely “recharge” the sun’s rays. But remember: measure is good in everything; otherwise, you risk getting a sunburn.
Let the thought flow
For the head to work with maximum efficiency, you must focus on a specific task: the brain is most efficient when it is busy solving a single problem, unless you are, of course, Julius Caesar.
But as recent research has found, sometimes it’s better to let go of your thoughts and reflect on something abstract – such a small “change” will allow you to perform tasks that require memory participation and increase overall thinking performance. Constant concentration on one or more things slows down information processing and “tires” the brain.
Talking with yourself
When a person begins to communicate with himself, many usually twist a finger at their temples, suspecting a problem with their head. Having studied this phenomenon, scientists have concluded that thinking aloud really improves intelligence.
The participants in the experiment were required to find an object, while their cues on the effectiveness of the search were recorded. The volunteers who spoke aloud the description of the purpose of the investigation coped with the task faster than those who were silent. Moreover, statements that were not related to the desired object did not give a pronounced effect; that is, it makes no sense to loudly repeat “refrigerator” if you cannot find the keys at home.
Active physical exercises and dancing will help to avoid the onset of senile insanity, scientists say. When a person dances, his body and head work harmoniously: movements require explicit psychomotor coordination, increasing attention and positively affecting spatial orientation. Decisions are also made faster, and, among other things, learning new dance steps makes the thinking process more flexible.
Do you want to “pump” your brain? Sign up for a dance school because it is not only beautiful but also functional.
Think over your diet
Often, certain foods are presented as a universal miracle cure for increasing intelligence. Please don’t believe it: it’s impossible to eat something for dinner and immediately become a genius. But it should be remembered that the quality of food has a significant effect on both the brain and the entire body as a whole, so you can choose a diet to reduce fatigue and optimize mental effort.
For successful head work, the body needs glucose (found in many fruits), unsaturated fatty acids (rich in fish), amino acids and antioxidants present in wine, and vitamin E, which can be found in nuts. Among other things, nutritionists advise including blueberries, avocados, and more cereals in the diet.
Exciting data were obtained by scientists who studied the functioning of the human brain while playing Tetris: short-term sessions of the game increased the amount of gray matter, improved skills in solving spatial thinking problems, and increased overall mental activity.
Another fantastic property of the well-known computer game is the smoothing out of mental trauma. If you spend some time folding colorful bricks on the screen in a stressful state, negative impressions are more likely to be forgotten.
Now doctors are interested in an unexpected therapeutic effect to use this method to mitigate the consequences of post-traumatic stress disorders.
There is a widespread belief that bodybuilders and athletes do not have high mental abilities, but, as it turned out, this is not the case.
Exercising, of course, does not raise IQ levels but improves blood circulation and general tone, which allows the brain to work more efficiently. Researchers have found experimentally that exercise improves cognitive skills in children and adults by about 10%. At the same time, it is not necessary to develop a complex set of activities – ordinary jogging is enough to achieve a positive effect.
Do not eat to capacity
When it comes to the long-term, improving mental performance will give a carefully selected set of food. Still, when you need a momentary effect (for example, you have to pass an exam), it is better to refrain from heavy meals.
Yale University School of Medicine experimented on mice, and it was found that the rodents performed much better on tests for higher cognitive functions when hungry. The reason for this lies in the mechanism of natural selection – when the brain “feels” hunger, the intensity of its work increases to reduce the time it takes to find food.
Therefore, if you have to brainwash, you should not eat “to the bone” – satiety does not contribute to the agility of thought, but you do not need to go on a hunger strike: it is essential to find a middle ground.