5 Simple Hacks to Improve Your Retention Power

4 minutes

Wouldn’t it be so cool if you could just pop a pill and become smarter? After all, smart is the new sexy. While a pill that improves cognition is yet to be created, here are a few simple hacks, easy as ever, to increase your cognition!

  1. Start your day by drinking a tall glass of water

Studies showed that children who drank water at the start of a task, performed better than the dehydrated children. It is perfect to start your day with water, since you have denied your body of water for a long period of time. In the researchers’ words, “Little research has examined the effect of water consumption on cognition in children. We examined whether drinking water improves performance from baseline to test in twenty-three 6–7-year-old children. There were significant interactions between time of test and water group (water/no water), with improvements in the water group on thirst and happiness ratings, visual attention and visual search, but not visual memory or visuomotor performance. These results indicate that even under conditions of mild dehydration, not as a result of exercise, intentional water deprivation or heat exposure, children’s cognitive performance can be improved by having a drink of water.”

  1. Drink green tea during the day

Instead of taking coffee breaks during the day, switch over to green tea. This is advocated by researcher Stefan Borgwardt, from the Psychiatric University Clinics in Switzerland, in a press release. As the press release reads, “In a new study, the researcher teams of Prof. Christoph Beglinger from the University Hospital of Basel and Prof. Stefan Borgwardt from the Psychiatric University Clinics found that green tea extract increases the brain’s effective connectivity, meaning the causal influence that one brain area exerts over another. This effect on connectivity also led to improvement in actual cognitive performance: Subjects tested significantly better for working memory tasks after the admission of green tea extract.”

  1. Take a short nap during the day

According to research conducted by Rosalind Cartwright, chairman of the department of psychology at Rush University, and Dr. Alon Avidan, the associate director of the sleep disorders program at UCLA, a perfectly timed nap does wonders when you are tired. But the important point to note here is that the nap must not exceed 15 – 20 minutes and must e taken between 1 pm and 3 pm.

  1. Play a video game instead of watching TV in your free time

So you have some time for yourself. Instead of microwaving the popcorn, grabbing a beer and settling on the couch to watch useless reality TV shows, just plonk on your bed and play video games. According to research published in nature.com, in the authors’ own words, “…Video game training augments GM (Gray matter) in brain areas crucial for spatial navigation, strategic planning, working memory and motor performance going along with evidence for behavioral changes of navigation strategy. The presented video game training could therefore be used to counteract known risk factors for mental disease such as smaller hippocampus and prefrontal cortex volume in, for example, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia and neurodegenerative disease.” We can bit this is the coolest bit of news you’ve heard all day!

  1. Get some exercise

Research by University of British Columbia, shows that exercise, the aerobic kind, increases the size of your hippocampus. So the kind of exercise that gets your heart racing, increases function in the region of the brain that is responsible for verbal learning and memory. So go ahead, take a jog around the block, and swim in the society pool or jump rope your way to smartness!

These are simple enough, right? For more tips on how to sat happier and healthier, stay tuned to the YourDOST blog!

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