Best Activities for Improving Brain Health without leaving home

An infographic to keep your brain healthy

A new study by Audley Villages has revealed the most popular everyday activities for maintaining brain health and longevity without leaving your home.

View the infographic representation of the brain health study here.

  • We have looked at the most popular scientifically supported activities you can do at home to improve brain health, based on global monthly search volume and psychologist research
  • With over 11,500,000 global monthly searches, drinking water has been revealed as the most popular activity to improve your brain health, followed by painting, sleeping and being in silence

Playing with pets increases levels of oxytocin, improving empathy, trust, and memory of social cues

  • According to Dr Rachel M Allan, Chartered Counselling Psychologist, mindfulness practice can help to reduce stress and depression and improve mood.

The brain is our body’s most complex organ, responsible for our thoughts, feelings, actions and memory. While it’s natural for our brain to lose cognitive function over time, it’s important that we do our best to maintain its health and longevity.

We have ranked the top 30 activities anyone can do to improve their brain health at home, based on popularity and psychological research.

From solving a puzzle to listening to music, the study highlights the top daily activities that help keep your mind sharp without leaving your home.

Drinking water is the most popular activity for improving psychological health at home

Drinking water is not only essential for keeping your body functioning, it’s also great for improving concentration and mental cognition.

Guzzling water will help to balance your mood and emotions as well as maintaining memory function. Getting in your recommended daily intake of H20 is also beneficial for increasing blood flow and oxygen to your brain. It can help to prevent and relieve headaches and reduce overall stress, regardless of age but particularly in retirement.

Painting is the best creative activity for boosting brain function indoors

Whether you’re skilled with a paintbrush or not, painting is the most popular activity for boosting your memory recollection skills - working to sharpen the mind through conceptual visualization.

With 7,080,000 global searches, people who often use creative mediums like painting and drawing (see this example by Mrs Micklethwait at our Royal Leamington Spa retirement village) have a decreased chance of developing memory loss illnesses in old age.

If you lack a passion for painting, language is a great alternative.

Reading poetry increases activity in the region of the brain associated with autobiographical memory.

Learning a foreign language is also one of the top lesser known activities for boosting brain health, with only 2,100 monthly searches. It can increase the areas of the brain associated with memory, such as the hippocampus and cerebral cortex.

Music is One of the Simplest Ways to Boost Brain Health

Music is one of the easiest ways of boosting brain health at home, with the majority of people listening to music for 32.1 hours a week.

When people listen to or play music, the entire brain lights up with increased neural activity.

Those who play music regularly can increase development in their corpus callous, the connection between the left and right sides of the brain - meaning a musician’s brain may have more agility for problem solving.

Listening to music can also improve sleep quality, mood, mental alertness, and memory, as well as reduce anxiety, blood pressure, and pain.

“Playing a musical instrument utilises fine motor skills, requires following patterns, drawing from memory and engaging with multi-sensory feedback”

reveals Dr Rachel M Allan,

“It draws on many different high-level brain functions at the same time, which strengthens connections between different regions of the brain.”

Other ways you can help boost your brain function indoors include drinking tea, with 685,000 searches and even doing a crossword, with over 495,000 searches each month.

Keep Moving to Keep Memory Loss Away

Daily walking and moving around has been found to strengthen the brain’s memory circuits and ensures your brain has a strong blood supply, to help it function better now and in future.

Ruth Cooper-Dickson, Positive Psychology Practitioner states that

“any form of exercise and being active is beneficial for the hippocampus - which is the part of the brain that acts like a brake on the stress response.”

"Exercise doesn’t have to be a strenuous gym session or a 5km run! Many Audley Club members and property owners take regular walks through the grounds of their village, enjoying the fresh air and a chance to stretch their legs...

"...Our brain is our most powerful organ and changes throughout our lifetime, adapting to experiences and continually developing. As we age we undergo natural cognitive decline, so engaging in activities that stimulate the formation of new cells and exercise our brains daily is fundamental in maintaining brain health at every age.”

Paul Morgan, Managing Director - Operations, Audley Villages

Discover other ways to stay healthy at home with fitness advice and recipes. #audleytogetherathome