What were your new year resolutions? Most of us have been accustomed with this virtually global tradition, where we set new life goals, hoping to achieve them in the new year. Goals are set annually – when the year is ending and another year is beginning.

easterThese goals are set to effect changes in various aspects of our lives, such as work, spiritual life, personal development, attitude, health, etc. Mostly, these goals are set based on a personal examination of events in the about ending or previous year – facets of our lives which did not seem to go well are reexamined and goals are set towards improving these aspects.

This Easter, I want us to look back at the resolutions we made at the beginning of this year. How far have you gone in realizing these resolutions? It is very important to review our resolutions and make conscious efforts to realize our goals. I invite you to consider this particular resolution of unparalleled import – your health.

One important aspect of our lives, that has an unprecedented influence on the other aspects is our health. Health as defined by the World Health Organization, “is the state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. The definition implies that, health is evaluated employing a holistic approach, which means when we make our health a priority, it will influence positively all facets of our lives. We may have had multiple resolutions for 2017, but prioritizing our health resolutions this Easter, will go a long way to serve as the foundation, enhancing the achievement of other set goals. We will take a look at some healthy resolutions we can add to or improve upon in our 2017 resolution list – with emphasis on our brain.

The Brain and Resolutions

The brain can be described as the puppet master, pulling all the strings in the human body. A malfunction of the brain would cause the whole body to malfunction, manifesting physically, mentally and socially. Taking good care of our brain is key to achieving our new year resolutions, and for that matter our Easter resolutions.

One fascinating way the brain works is to help us adopt a new hobby or way of life. When thoughts are produced in the brain – like new year or Easter resolutions, we are expected to act upon them, action will progress it into a behavior and then into our character. The brain adopts and acquaints itself with a new way of life, when it’s done repeatedly. So, to start any new thing as a new year resolution or improve upon it, you will need a healthy brain and will have to perform this new thing or activity repeatedly.

Sequel to what has been said about the brain, a question could be asked that, “what healthy resolutions can I make to care for my brain?” To care for your brain in 2017, I share seven (7) healthy resolutions for the brain;

1. Identify your stressors and manage them effectively. Stress has been identified a global epidemic, causing various mental, physical and social health problems. What you need is effective stress management in 2017.

2. Drink more water. The brain is made up of about 85% water, so as the entire body about 60%-70% water. Drinking more water enhances brain function.

3. Go caffeine-less in 2017. Caffeine can be found in tea, chocolate, pain killers, soft drinks, etc. Caffeine has been shown to affect the brain and its function. It has been liked to various cancers, osteoporosis and depletion of certain vitamins and minerals.

4. Substitute refined sugar with honey. Refined sugar interrupts with communication between brain cells leading to cognition and memory deficits. Honey on the other hand is a known food with nutrients that enhances brain activities.

5. Exercise more. Physical activity has been demonstrated to be very effective in preventing non-communicable or lifestyle diseases. Exercise enhances the brain’s activities and makes it more effective.

6. Alcohol is considered more of a drug than food. Alcohol in its various forms are very deleterious to our health, and hence should be avoided.

7. Have an attitude of gratitude. Our attitude affects our lives to a greater extent, it is therefore of import to cultivate a positive attitude. Spend time to be grateful to God and the people around you, show appreciation for what you have received. An attitude of gratitude is refreshing and improves brain function.

There may be a number of things that didn’t go well with your health in 2016 or are not going well in this early part of 2017, it is worth reexamining them and looking at certain lifestyles that ought to be changed or improved. It is very important to make your health a priority, make conscious efforts to stay healthy in 2017. Remember, without good health all other resolutions and life goals cannot be achieved.

Samuel Anokye Badu