Do you have the reaction time of a 20 or 30 year old? Take this test to find out and get the secrets for improving your score.
If you've ever played a game that requires a quick reaction time with your children or grandchildren only to get beaten, you know that reaction time slows down as we age. You may also notice a slowed reaction time when speaking with someone who talks very quickly, or even when driving.
To Test Your Reaction Time, Take the Ruler Test
To test your reaction time, have someone hold a ruler up in the air at the 12" or 18" mark (depending on the size of the ruler). Position your thumb and middle finger about 3½ inches apart at equal distance on either side of the bottom of the ruler (the 0" mark).
Have the person who is holding the ruler drop it without warning, and try to catch it between your thumb and finger as quickly as possible. Before you let go of the ruler, note where you caught it. You want to repeat this test three times and then take an average of your scores. Average scores tend to range from catching the ruler at the 6-inch mark for those who are 20-30 years of age, at the 10-inch mark for those who are 40-50, and at the 12-inch mark or more for those who are ages 60 and above.
To Improve Your Brain Health and Reaction Time:
- Eat foods that contain alpha linolenic acid (LNA) and DHA which can have a vital impact on brain health. Some good choices include wild Alaskan salmon, DHA-fortified eggs, nuts, seeds, soy, and avocado.
- Avoid aluminum, which can be found in some deodorants, antacids, and baking powder. Plus, avoid using aluminum foil in cooking or baking, and don’t drink out of aluminum cans.
- Limit, or eliminate, alcohol which can cause premature aging of the brain.
- Exercise your mind with activities that can keep you mentally sharp, such as Sudoku, reading, and crossword puzzles.
- Energize your brain with coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). Your brain requires a phenomenal amount of energy for proper functioning (it’s second only to the heart in its need for and exposure to high quantities of oxygen), and CoQ10 fuels cell mitochondria that provide brain power. I recommend 100–200 mg/day of CoQ10.
- Supplement with acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC), which is a methylated version of the amino acid L-carnitine. It directly supports the brain, improving cognition, memory, and learning. Plus, it helps to relieve depression and reduces some of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. For brain support, I recommend 1,500–3,000 mg ALC per day.
- Nourish your brain with omega-3s. Eating low-mercury cold water fish 1–2 times a week is ideal for the brain because of the omega-3 fatty acids. Taking 2–3 grams of an omega-3 rich oil daily is a great substitute if you don’t care for fish.
- Take a good daily multi-nutrient that provides B-vitamin support.
Now it's your turn: How do you stay mentally sharp?