13 04 memory problems menopause tips tricks better rememberFind out the truth and learn five ways to keep your memory razor sharp.

Scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center have discovered that the supposed memory problems women in their 40s and 50s experience as they begin to go through menopause aren’t made up. The study assessed the cognitive skills (such as attention, verbal learning and fine motor skills) of 117 women and found that those in their first year of post-menopause performed worse than those who hadn’t yet gone through menopause and those who were currently going through the transition. While researchers think fluctuating estrogen levels may be the culprit, women should know that the effects, while frustrating, are only temporary.

So how can you keep your memory sharp?

1. Exercise your mind with challenging games and puzzles that require you to think or by trying new activities.

2. Eat lots of fish (full of memory boosting omega-3 oils) and leafy greens, like spinach and kale, which contain vitamin E and folate to help lower your risk of Alzheimer’s.

3. Avoid smoking, which decreases blood flow to the brain and increases your blood pressure, both of which make it harder for your brain to retain information.

4. Get plenty of sleep so your brain has time to consolidate your memories at night and prepare you to think clearly the next day.

5. Studies have also found that those experiencing depression have a harder time remembering things. Make sure you stay socially and physically active to keep depression at bay, and you’ll always have happy memories to look back on.