The brain, being the center of a person's nervous system, helps the entire body to function. So to be able to take responsibility for our day-to-day lives, the brain is said to selfishly take energy for its own purpose before distributing it to other body parts.
This prioritization is called the “selfish brain” theory, wherein our brains gather as much energy as it needs before distributing it to other areas of the body. Initially, the theory was used to gather more information on obesity, but researchers saw how it's also connected to how the brain functions to support bodily activities.
To prove that the said theory is true, the University of Cambridgeasked a team of rowers to simultaneously do a memory task and a physical rowing task. Results showed that the participants' physical abilities were significantly lower than their memory's performance while doing the test. In conclusion, while the rowers were multitasking, the brain indeed took more resources to be able to work better.
Since this suggests that the brain can demand resources, it may also counter the idea that we are stuck with an innate level of intelligence. If the brain does indeed take the energy it needs first from your body's limited resources, it may be possible that the energy can be used to continue to improve cognitive abilities even in adulthood.
Ways to naturally boost your intelligence
How can you take advantage of your brain's greed for energy to boost our intelligence? Here are five tips that may help you get started:
Eat well and exercise – The body needs the right nutrients and enough activity to keep it healthy, and so does the brain. There is a well-established link between food intake and brain function, and many studies have explored the link between certain foods and the risk of dementia. Furthermore, exercise routines such as 30-minute moderate-intensity aerobic sessions increase neuroplasticity, which is responsible for the brain's ability to learn new things.
Find motivation – Giving your brain a goal to achieve a certain level of intelligence can be helpful. So to improve your intelligence, never think that your IQ level will remain the same throughout your life. Instead, think of it as a baby who can improve through constant learning and experience.
Go outside – A natural bacterium found in dirt called Mycobacterium vaccae was found to effectively increase cognitive function in mice. It is also linked to neuron growth, increased serotonin levels, and reduced anxiety. By going outdoors, you can ingest this helpful bacterium – by breathing outside air – which can be beneficial to your brain.
Practice – Playing brain games like crossword puzzles and Sudoku may be helpful in improving cognitive abilities. This will also help train your brain when it comes to learning and acquiring new skills.
Get enough sleep – Study says that the brain plays a big role in terms of organizing our memories. Essentially, the brain decides which short-term memories to keep, and eventually connect them to your long-term memory storage. Sleeping gives the brain that extra boost to do this particular function which can be related to retaining new information or skills.
Fun facts about the brain
The brain is truly impressive given the number of things it can do. Besides the normal daily functions it oversees, here are some fun facts about the brain:
More than 10 percent of the brain works daily – Contrary to popular belief that we only use 10 percent of our brain capacity, people are actually utilizing almost, if not all, 100 percent of their brains every day.
Running out of brain cells is impossible – According to studies, the brain produces hundreds of thousands of neurons each month. This means dead brain cells are being replaced through the process called neurogenesis.
Age has no bearing on the death of brain cells – According to study, there is no age-related loss of brain cells; therefore the brains of those in their 80s and 90s had as many neurons as those in their 50s. However, it is found that the brain shrinks by at least 10 percent by age 90.
Learn of other interesting brain facts and improving your cognitive health at Brain.news.