Posts tagged: memory

Midlife Health: Forgetfulness



Two elderly couples were enjoying friendly conversation when one of the men asked the other, “Fred, how was the memory clinic you went to last month?”

“Outstanding,” Fred replied. “They taught us all the latest psychological techniques – visualization, association – it’s made a big difference for me.”

“That’s great! What was the name of that clinic?”

Fred went blank. He thought and thought but couldn’t remember. Then a smile broke across his face and he asked, “What do you call that flower with the long stem and thorns?”

“You mean a rose?”

“Yes, that’s it!” He turned to his wife. “Rose, what was the name of that clinic?”

By the time we get to midlife, or even before, we can all probably relate to the joke.  First you forget your car keys, then you don’t remember whether you paid the phone bill and next you can’t remember your ATM password.  Forgetfulness can be a normal part of aging.

Scientists now tell us that most of us can stay both alert and able as we age, although it may take us longer to remember things. I like to think of it as already having so much information and knowledge in my brain that some of it gets misplaced for a time underneath another pile of good information.  It’s not lost, just buried.

In addition to some of the popular brain training games and memory techniques, there’s a supplement that might be helpful – Vinpocetine.

Vinpocetine is an extract from the leaf of the periwinkle plant.  Studies have shown that it can help circulation in the brain, improve oxygen use and make red blood cells more flexible and less clumped together.  It was developed in the 1960s and is available as a prescription drug in Japan and Europe but as a dietary supplement in the US and Canada.

Interestingly, this brain booster has also been shown to improve eyesight in many cases. That way, you can see more clearly what you’ve forgotten!

As always, check with your practitioner first regarding any possible side effects and interactions with other substances.


All material is provided for informational or educational purposes only. Consult a physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or condition.

Memory at Midlife: Did Your Car Keys Disappear Again?

Do you find you are forgetting things more often?  Those car keys that just disappeared again!  The grocery list that’s probably still on the kitchen table!  The eyeglasses you’re sure you left next to the bookcase! 

As we age, our memory seems to fail more often. Researchers point to the erosion of the white matter pathways in our brains as the reason.  This impairs communication between different areas of the brain.

For a fun exercise try this short-term memory test (slightly modified) developed by the Memory Assessment Clinic in Maryland.

Read through this list just once, and only once, and concentrate on each word. Then look away and have a pen and paper handy.

Here’s the list:

  • Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Milk
  • Blueberries
  • Peanuts
  • Shrimp
  • Carrots
  • Mayonnaise
  • Oregano
  • Cucumber
  • Papaya
  • Noodles
  • Ham
  • Crackers
  • Cottage Cheese

Now write down as many of the foods as you can remember on your sheet of paper.

How many did you remember?

The average person ages 18-39 can remember ten items. From ages 40-59, nine items; from ages 60-69, eight items and for 70 and older, seven items.

If you scored low for your age, there are MANY books and articles available on increasing your memory power. I would give you some names now, but I have forgotten them!

PS If you find you are being forgetful because your life is one big clutter and you are unfocused and distracted, a tool you might want to try is EFT. For more information check out the EFT World Summit starting tomorrow.

EFT World Summit

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