5 Out-of-the-Box Ways to Improve Memory Function

The sad truth is that one in three senior citizens will suffer Alzheimer’s Disease or another form of dementia in their lifetimes. When it is diagnosed, Alzheimer’s is often treated with medications – but what if it could be kept at bay naturally?

While there is no definite dementia prevention method, there are things people can do even decades in advance to sharpen their brain’s edge. Take a look at 5 memory boosters that you likely don’t automatically associate with better brain health – but you should.

Going barefoot

Researchers from the University of North Florida recently conducted a study using 72 exercise science majors and found out that running barefoot led to better working memory function than running in shoes. When runners were given a series of targets to memorize and then step on when running, they performed better barefoot. Going barefoot is believed to be a much more heightened sensory experience than covering up with shoes – so find opportunities to take off your shoes and stimulate your brain a little more.

Playing bingo

Who would have thought this classic game came with brain benefits attached? Researchers studied a variety of bingo players, including some suffering Alzheimer’s disease, and discovered that there were brain benefits attached to playing bingo. Overall, dementia patients showed a slower rate of cognitive decline and extended concentration and focus are the likely reasons. Whether learning to play online or in an official bingo hall, the game has health benefits that go beyond the dopamine boosts of socialization and stress relief.

Spacing out

Memory improvement isn’t always about doing anything extra or increasing focus. Ed Cooke, one of just 151 Grand Masters of Memory in the world, says he believes that taking the time to clear the mind can increase memory capability immediately thereafter. In an interview with TIME, Cooke said that when the brain relaxes, it “creates space” that allows new memories to enter the mind. So if you are hoping to learn a new skill or are getting ready to study, take the time to first clear your mind and get it totally relaxed. It could mean a faster journey to memorization.


In addition to the relaxing qualities of the physical side of gardening, the memory capacity it takes to plan, plant, water, and harvest is a good workout for brains. Even people already suffering Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia have been shown to recognize certain groups of plants and flowers, and be able to cultivate them based on the seed cycle. In addition to the memory boost, gardening provides fresh food and all the physical health benefits that accompany it.


Following directions is an exercise in memory strength and eventually following those directions without a guide is a test in memory capabilities. Cognitive motions, like those repetitive actions that happen in baking and other cooking tasks, sharpen memory skills.

Until there’s a natural cure for dementia, prevention is the best medicine. Sharpening your memory skills, one task at a time, adds up and can mean a higher quality of life with dementia at a distance.

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  1. Wow, I did not know about the barefoot thing… Cool! LOL!

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