happinessYou may have read or heard many advice on how to be happy.  Perhaps some have worked for you, but most often, they just leave you as miserable as before.  Chances are, some of those tips are based on hearsay or even steeped in superstitions or old folk’s tales. Maybe, it’s time you read some scientifically proven tips on how to be happy.

First of all, you must be aware of the fact that your brain is the principal source of happiness.  It dictates, not only your movements, but more importantly, your feelings and emotions. You may be physically fit but if your brain tells you that you are miserable, then you feel miserable. It is just logical then that you start working on your happiness with your brain.

Here are some scientifically proven tips to ensure that your brain stays healthy and happy:

happinessEat nutritious food

Being aware of what you eat on a daily basis can lead to a healthy and happy brain. Studies have proven that what you eat affects your cognitive processes and emotions. Among these are foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids which are found in oily fish and nuts. This substance supports brain function and mental fitness. Stay away from processed food and those that are high in saturated fat because they can increase the risk of neurological dysfunction. Consume more whole and natural foods, such as eggs, grass-fed dairy, organic meats, fruits and vegetables. Increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids, which can be found in oily fish and walnuts, and stay away from processed foods as much as possible.

Include coconut oil food

This is not an old wives’ tale on herbal medicine. A recent scientific study proves that adding coconut oil to your diet can prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson. The presence of medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) fats in coconut oil increases brain function. Coconut oil can be used in place of more common shortening in cooking and baking. It also tastes as good, if not better, but definitely best for your brain’s health.

happinessCareful on caffeine and alcohol

It has been proven by studies that over a long time intake of caffeine can narrow the blood vessels in some areas of the brain, particularly the temporal lobes and prefrontal cortex. This results to poor memory and depression. Similar effects are caused by too many alcoholic beverages.

However, if you need short-time stimulants, a cup of coffee a day or a couple glasses of wine per week is not bad.  Your consumption of caffeine and alcohol should be regulated for the sake of a healthier brain and a happier life for a long time to come.

Interact more with others

According to a study by the Harvard School of Public Health among 50-year olds and above, social interactions and good relationships with others (especially with loved ones), can delay memory loss. The study goes to prove that people active in their social activities have slower rate of memory decline and have healthier and happier brains. Therefore, it is crucial that you spend more time with your loved ones and friends.

happinessLearn a skill

Research shows that learning a skill such as playing a musical instrument or picking up a second language can enhance your brain’s cognitive skill and prevents memory loss. Trying something new that you have not done before can promote a healthy brain function and happiness. Your brain will be most grateful to you if you do something new and challenging to stimulate it.

Flex your muscles

Do high-intensity interval training to improve your mental and physical health faster than   traditional exercise can. This is done by doing brief intense workouts, followed by a brief rest period on a treadmill or any other cardio equipment. You can also do several body-weight exercises. Study shows that high-intensity interval training and strength enhancing workouts twice a week increases the supply of oxygen and vanadium(V) oxide in the brain and improve  cognitive function — factors that are important in maintaining your mental health.

happinessGet enough sleep

Science has shown sleeping is important for your bodily physiological function.  Lack of sleep has serious adverse effects on the cognitive functions  of the brain. These may cause accidents or may even have fatal consequences.  You should sleep at least seven to eight hours a day.  Keeping a regular sleeping time will help maintain your circadian rhythm (your natural body clock) to be better synchronized, thus making you more productive and happier throughout the day.

Learn to meditate

Meditation or the practice of yoga is a great way to attain peace and calm, both physically and mentally. Eliminating stressful thoughts and things not necessary in your life can make your brain healthy and functioning well. A fast-paced daily living can be detrimental to your well-being. A study conducted by the University of California (Los Angeles) shows that yoga and meditation can reduce stress levels and prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s and early dementia. Reduce the demands on yourself and your brain will stay healthier.

happinessLearn how to save

You may find it rather odd that saving has got something to do with a healthier brain. Although the amount you save does not matter much, it will serve as a start in setting financial goals. The act of saving itself has no direct bearing on your brain’s functions, but science has proven that having a financial goal has.  Having a plan for financial security stimulates your brain to develop complex executive functions such as scheduling and organizing. It will also bring joy to your brain and improves its health, not to mention your pocket.

For people who are rather cynic when it comes to cures, these scientifically-backed tips may prove acceptable and effective to them.