Why do some people keep their focus and concentration as they age while others don't? Countless studies have tried to discover this secret. While science is still looking to discover a way to stop aging and prevent cognitive impairments, neuroscientists have come to the conclusion that you can... stop the "ticking of the aging clock" if you feed your brain with the right amounts of the right supplements.
But what are the BEST supplements that support focus and concentration? Keep reading to find out. If you are left with questions at the end, we invite you to post them in the designated section below. We do our best to answer all our reader's comments... personally and promptly.
The first thing you'll need to know about focus is that there are different types of focus. For example, have you ever tried locating a friend in a large crowd? If you know where he/she is, you'll direct your focus and attention towards the place they are at, instead of struggling to find them. Simple as that... isn't it?
This type of focus is known as "spatial attention". It allows humans to selectively process visual information through prioritization of an area within their visual field.
Mental focus and concentration are two synonyms with the same meaning. They represent the ability to put your mind to the task you want to accomplish, without being distracted by other outdoors stimuli.
Another option is to search for your friend's face. To do this, your brain has to recall the memory of his/her face and then try to match it without getting distracted by all the other sights and sounds. This type of attention is called "object-based attention".
We receive thousands of different inputs of data every day. So, how does the brain filter that enormous quantity of information? The process of selection includes a variety of different brain neurons. A neuron in the brain receives thousands of inputs but it sends just one message.
What is critical in cases of attention and focus impairments is to figure out how to select that one key message from many different distractions. The way we do that? Temporal processing in the brain.
Brain neurons do not react to the thousands of inputs they receive. On the contrary, they must be very sensitive to the timing of various inputs. In fact, our neurons synchronize their activity in order to filter information. But this ability declines as we grow older.
Mental processes such as attention, memory and the ability to process information are at their peak in our 30s and 40s. However, as we get older, we find it increasingly difficult to:
The age-related cognitive decline varies significantly among people. Some experience little change, while others develop Alzheimer's Disease or other forms of dementia. These changes come as a result of degeneration of gray matter in the cerebral cortex. In fact, aging is referred to reduction in the total volume of gray matter, while memory deficits with deterioration of the hippocampus.
So, how can you support your brain focus as you age?
The ability to focus helps you maintain a healthy memory and ability to think clearly. But if aging is characterized by a gradual decline in cognitive function, how can you counteract or prevent loss of focus?
When you find it difficult to concentrate, taking specific supplements may help improve your condition. You'll find this list helpful in reaching better mental focus and memory. The first set of supplements we view as the most essential supplements for focus. The second are other brain supportive combinations that can continue to enhance focus.
1. Acetyl L Carnitine
This supplement works by reducing fatigue, which in turn helps your concentration. Studies have shown that it can help older adults with focus.
2. B Vitamins
Usually, people diagnosed with vitamin B deficiency experience attention problems.
B vitamins help your brain enzymes to transform carbohydrates for energy. These vitamins synthesize serotonin, dopamine, and GABA neurotransmitters forming a shields between brain neurons. Vitamin B deficiency contributes to nervousness and irritability.
3. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid)
Docosahexaenoic acid plays an essential role in learning, memory, and behavior. This omega-3 fatty acid is a primary structural component of the human brain. DHA is a major building block of the brain and critical for optimal brain health and function. Medical researchers discovered that DHA provides brain-boosting benefits in infants and aging adults.
This supplement is beneficial for maintaining nerve connections. Phosphatidylserine is a fat-soluble phospholipid and a key component of all cell membranes. It supports cognitive functions such as focus and attention.
5. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is an important antioxidant that primarily protects cells from damage associated with oxidative stress caused by free radicals. The brain is highly susceptible to oxidative stress, which increases during ageing and is considered a major contributor to neurodegeneration. The main benefit of vitamin E is to prevent or delay cognitive decline.
Calcium has been shown to successfully address symptoms of ADHD, but it is not the only piece of the puzzle. Magnesium, zinc, copper, GABA, B vitamins, and iron are also commonly low in children and adults with ADHD. In fact, changing diet or adding supplements can lessen symptoms of ADHD and boost overall concentration.
Iron helps regulate the activity of dopamine, a neurotransmitter synthesized by the adrenal glands and intricately involved in behavior and concentration. Iron, the most absorbable "heme" form, is found abundantly in meat, poultry, and fish.
Magnesium calms the central nervous system, which is essential to focus. It is a key factor in the production of serotonin, which an important neurotransmitter that promotes the feeling of calm and well-being.
9. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is necessary for healthy brain function and is considered a neuroprotective agent. Indeed, Vitamin C is one of the most important vitamins for the body. Vitamin C is used to remove chemicals, metals, and other toxic materials from the body through the liver. In addition to removing toxic material from the body, vitamin C is beneficial for muscle production and immune system boost.
10. Vitamin D3
Vitamin D is known to improve the concentration of glutathione in the brain. Glutathione is an antioxidant useful for counteracting harmful free radicals in the central nervous system. Its protective action prevents damage to the neurons and helps in maintaining brain health. Additionally, vitamin D is needed for certain steps in the productions of brain chemicals such as dopamine and norepinephrine.
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Yes. Supplement can help you improve focus.
Recent medical studies have discovered a connection between certain foods and the brain's chemical balance. This means that the things you eat have significant role in the development of cognitive diseases later in life. And if you experience a deficient in brain supportive nutrients due to:
... a brain supplement can help you fill the gap.
However, you can combine a supplement with action, as well. The following lifestyle changes can also improve focus naturally. These factors affect our ability to stay focused:
Many people feel that breaks will negatively influence on the quality of their work. But this is wrong. If the brain does not rest, it becomes less productive. The brain needs oxygen and movement for stimulation. According to an MIT study at the McGovern Institute for Brain REsearch, the estimated time for reaching maximum concentration and focus is 52 minutes after which you need to make a seven minute break.
Staying up late at night is a common practice for many people. But you should know that neither coffee nor any other supplement for staying awake can compensate for adequate sleep. Lack of rest decreases your ability to make decisions and perform anything which requires your attention. The right amount of sleep you need according to experts is 7-8 hours in order to have fresh energy and focus during the day.
#3: Your Diet
There is nothing harder than avoiding a candy bar in the afternoon or in the evening. Consuming high amounts of sugar causes a drastic drop in your blood sugar levels. This leaves you feeling tired, with a groggy brain. Aim to substitute sugar with good fats and proteins throughout the day. Additionally. make sure you're drinking enough water, since sometimes dehydration can cause fatigue, headaches and focus problems.
#4: Physical Activity
Not being physically active does not mean saving energy; quite the contrary. Our brain requires sports and physical activity. While you are running, swimming or engaged in any other type of physical activity you increase your blood flow to the brain, and by that increase alertness as well. Do not miss a chance to participate in a sport activity whenever you can.
#5: Mind Dump List
Having a "to-do list" is always a helpful reminder if you have many obligations. However, ruminating is neither helpful nor productive. Getting daily tasks out of your mind and down on paper will keep your mind relaxed. As you build your list make sure to prioritize the tasks. After you complete a task, scratch it. This will boost your confidence. Then, move down to the next one.
If you find that:
...you might benefit from taking a concentration supplement. As we have shown, natural focus supplements have the potential to help you concentrate on the task at hand, increase your alertness, and improve mental clarity!
Now that we've discussed the benefits of focus and concentration supplements, questions may be popping into your mind. If you leave your questions and concerns below, we'll be able to address them and hopefully help you along your journey to an optimal, focused mind.
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