LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- On this Medical Monday, here are three ways to eat, sleep, and gargle your way to a better brain from Reader's Digest.
Stay sharp with these simple, scientifically proven techniques.
1. Eat less fake butter. Whether spread on a bagel or poured over movie popcorn, many butter substitutes and flavorings contain chemicals, which may harm brain cells. They promote protein clumps in the brain that mark Alzheimer's disease. As for movie popcorn -- Ordering it without the added buttery liquid should reduce chemical exposure.
2. Gargle with lemonade. A new study finds that sweet liquids boost resolve. Rinsing your mouth with sugar-sweetened lemonade has been found to help students perform better on tests of willpower. Researchers used to think the sugar had to enter the body to give you the energy for self-control -- But just holding the sugar in your mouth apparently signals the brain's motivational centers to pay attention.
3. Sleep seven hours. Getting too much sleep may be just as toxic to health as sleeping too little. Regularly sleeping two hours more or less than seven hours a night was equivalent to two years of brain aging. The cognitive effects were also present when sleep habits changed by two hours a night.