A working brain may not be necessarily healthy, but a healthy brain is good for efficient capabilities. To have a healthy working brain, the mind ought to be nourished, subjected to exercises, mind and body activities that help the body to get relieved. The mind also requires spiritual nourishment, so that it can be free from the normal happenings as it thinks of the supernatural existence. This being the case, proper care ought to be taken to maintain the healthiness of the brain. This being the case to improve brain function, all possible positive attributes should be undertaken. The benefits of a good (working) brain include the ability to be sensitive, focused, and alert among other factors. Some factors that may lead to the poor working of the brain include some risk factors like brain injury, lack of proper food, genetics, and psychological problems.
Good Brain Function
The functioning of a good brain helps an individual to always be alert and receptive to the stimuli of the surrounding. Contrary to this, a bad /sick brain is problematic as it affects the normal functioning of a person. This being the case, it is important for an individual to do “all that it takes” to ensure that the brain is kept fit and healthy. Healthy working memory helps one to be focused, sensitive, sharp, and smart. It can be enhanced when an individual engages in exercises, especially those that challenge the mind, eating “the brain” food, engaging in spirituality among other functions. Failure to keep the working memory healthy may affect the normal functioning of an individual. This paper, therefore, aims at identifying the brain capabilities while at the same time focusing on the importance of a good working memory and the factors that affect brain functioning.
The brain is a complex organ that serves at the center of the nervous system in vertebrates (Oleksy, 2001). It has the core function of linking all the other body parts through the sensory nerves. This being the case, the brain has various capabilities that include cognition function. It is the role of the brain to coordinate all the thinking that takes place in the body and conveys that role on top of the other body parts. At the same time, the brain has the sole purpose of interpreting the emotions’ feelings due to stimuli. This, therefore, means that once the body is subjected to a given stimulus, the brain responds by signaling the body parts to respond in a given way. The behavior of an individual is also controlled by the brain through the utilization of the five senses. The brain controls various body systems including the respiratory system, the circulatory, genitourinary, and the nervous system among other body systems (Kuhlenbeck, 1978)
Benefits of Good Brain Function
Working memory or the cognitive skill allows the brain to focus and be able to process information (Pickering, 2006). A good working memory enables students to function well in school since they will be able to remember and memorize various subjects.
A good working brain acts as a conductor that helps one to make choices appropriately. This is important as it helps one in delaying gratifications and therefore making the apt choices when necessary. A good brain helps in the management of time and information and this helps one to know how to prioritize issues. Without a good memory, it would be difficult to know which option to make, when to make the decision, and why the decision has to be made. This will help one in becoming focused when making decisions.
With a good brain function, one is able to make decisions better and objectively since critical thinking will be applied in all decision-making. A sharp brain is able to scrutinize and make decisions quickly. Between a person with smart brains and one whose brain is not as smart as the other, who is able to make smart decisions? That depends on several other factors but all conditions remain constant, the person with good brains is able to learn more easily while at the same time being able to take more risks. Therefore, with good brains, it is eminent that an individual is likely to adjust to the environment thus enjoying the challenges of nature in a positive and motivated manner (Greely, 2008).
Improving the Brain Function
Despite the fact that the brains deteriorate in its functioning capability, as one grows old here are some ways that can be employed, to help improve brain function. The methods include exercising. Exercise not only nourishes the brain but also helps the whole body to keep fit/ healthy (Grealy, 1999). It is therefore important to treat the body well as this enhances the brain’s ability to process and recall information. Physical exercises at the same time increase the oxygen concentration in the brain, thus reducing the risks of disorders like cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. Exercises also help in enhancing the brain chemicals and protecting the brain cells. For the brain to perform at its capacity, one ought to vary the activities done. This means that as one does the physical exercise, another mind “jogging” activities should be undertaken that include hiking, brain games, and brain teasers as they help interface the different brain parts that enable it to be sharp ( Cotman & Engesser-Cesar, 2002). As one exercise, it is important for a person who intends to have good brain functioning to at least have some naps/ sleep durations. This is vital as it helps the brain to consolidate. Lack of sleep is likely to affect the thinking capacity of the brain.
A good brain needs nourishment. This being the case, one should eat brain food. This is because there are some foods that decrease mental functioning. Foods like omega 3, DHA, and EPA help in lowering the risks of dementia. Mind improving food also helps the brain to improve focus and memory (Reis, 2006).
Socializing is another way that the brain can be improved. Meaningful relationships and strong support systems help in keeping the brain emotionally healthy. Studies do indicate that people who are outgoing and socialize have lower risks of memory decline (Custers & Aarts, 2010). Some of the ways in which one can socialize are through volunteering, joining social clubs, seeing friends often as in this, the mind is rejuvenated as it explores new things. Socializing therefore aims at checking one’s happiness.
Stress is dangerous to one’s body and mind. Mental health helps the brain to be able to meditate. This checks various conditions like depression, anxiety, chronic pains among other disorders. Meditation also helps to improve focus, concentration as well as reasoning, and creativity (Tang, 2007). The brain can also be improved when it is challenged by being given new workouts. These will enable the brain to improve its memorizing capabilities and critical evaluations.
Spirituality is more than religious values and involves the means by which one turns things that are not tangible away from the material and physical things. Spirituality leads to a peaceful existence, which is beneficial to the brain. Some of the spiritual aspects include prayers, yoga, meditation, and quiet contemplation that help one to connect between the self and the values one has in life. Spirituality can help reduce stress.
Factors that Decrease the Good Brain Function
The brain’s ability is dependent on the nutrients that a person takes the physical activities, stress levels, and spirituality among other factors. However, brain development is affected by various factors that include heredity. Various research studies have been done indicating that the brain is affected by hereditary factors. Families that have members suffering from autism are also likely to pass the genes to other generations within the same family line (Zasler, 2007). An example of the heredity effect is the case of identical twins, whereby both may develop the same problem. This is a result of the genetic makeup.
During the pregnancy period, the fetal brain is growing. Therefore, anything that disrupts the normal brain development also affects the lifelong brains capability of the child. This may be in the form of language, children’s sensory or mental functioning. This, therefore, explains the importance of the mother. These functions among others affect the brain functioning during pregnancy, during delivery, or other environmental factors (Debruyne, 2012). All these functions may affect the normal healthy development of the brain.
Another factor that affects the brain includes stress. If one is stressed up, the possibility of the mind being affected is high. This is because the normal thinking capability of an individual is affected and some cells may end up being affected. As indicated earlier, the food that an individual consumes affects the working capabilities of the brain. For example, a person who takes excess alcohol or engages in narcotic drugs risks damaging the brain cells. This may in some situations lead to a person becoming mentally retarded or sick. This situation may also affect future generations as in the case of pregnant women. Naturally, a cognitive decline of the brain may be attributed to the age of the person, risk factors that include physical activity, the brain food among other factors all contribute towards the way the brain functions (Whitney, 2011).
The brain is a delicate but complex organ that has the capabilities of controlling the whole of the nervous system. A good working memory is advantageous because it helps the body to stay fit while at the same time enabling one to be sensitive and alert. The brain generally coordinates the five functions. Some of the actors that help to improve the conditions of the brain include exercises, healthy food, socializing, and engaging in meditation or spirituality. On the other hand, the brain is affected by heredity and predisposing factors among others. It is therefore important to keep the body fit as it helps in the control of the body function
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Pickering, S. J. (2006). Working memory and education. London: Academic Press.
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Whitney, E. N., DeBruyne, L. K., Pinna, K., & Rolfes, S. R. (2011). Nutrition for health and health care. Australia: Wadsworth.
Zasler, N. D., & Katz, D. I. (2007). Brain injury medicine: Principles and practice. New York: Demos.
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