About the Train the Brain Campaign:

Train the Brain, Palm Health Foundation’s community health campaign, annually takes place from October 1-31. The goal of Train the Brain is to help Palm Beach County residents understand that taking care of the brain is just as important as taking care of the body.  With information and resources provided, participants are encouraged to make changes in their thinking about mental health conditions, adopt brain health habits that integrate self-care behaviors into their daily routines and show compassion to individuals with acute and persistent mental health conditions.

Improved brain health leads to better health overall.  Our brains can’t do push-ups or run laps, but we can train our brains to minimize the harmful effects of stress and achieve balance in our lives. It’s important to learn how to feed, nurture and strengthen our brains while also eliminating activities that can cause the brain stress and ultimately lead to chronic health issues.

Holistic Domains of Brain Health Image

Train the Brain 2020: Resilience & Self-Care in the Face of Adversity

Each year, the Train the Brain campaign focuses on a unique aspect of brain health. This year’s campaign theme, Resilience & Self-Care in the Face of Adversity, responds to the challenging times we find ourselves in. So far, 2020 has been a year filled with uncertainty and unexpected hardship. Many of us are experiencing stress and anxiety like never before. According to a recent study presented by the CDC, social isolation due to social distancing measures, financial struggle and racial discrimination are furthering a suicide crisis – “Nearly 11% of American adults seriously considered suicide this June, according to CDC data.” 


Palm Health Foundation is using the 
Train the Brain campaign to shine a spotlight on the free, virtual brain health workshops, support groups and learning opportunities (offered by our partners and grantees) that are designed to help our community cope during this time. 

The Neighbors Helping Neighbors Fund at Palm Health Foundation

Our lives have all been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, but some of us are struggling much more than others in this “new normal.” Palm Health Foundation has established The Neighbors Helping Neighbors Fund to put small grants directly in the hands of Palm Beach County residents so they can recover, rebuild and plan for the future.

Here are some things you might not realize have a negative effect on brain health:

  • Multitasking can overload the brain and actually cause it to shrink!
  • Too much smartphone and internet use can exhaust your brain and inhibit deep thinking.
  • Sleep deprivation to the brain is the equivalent of being drunk – brain function and response speed worsen.
  • A stressful environment can reduce blood flow in the brain and lower its functioning.

But here’s the good news: there are so many brain health activities that can make the brain stronger! Even the smallest of changes to our daily routines and practices can lead to better brain health.  For example:

  • Learning a new hobby has been shown to increase brain function.
  • Participating in meaningful social activities (i.e. volunteering, visiting with friends and family) maintains and increases brain function.
  • We can train our brains to think positively and form happy thoughts to drive out negative, harmful ones.
  • Meditation rewires the brain and reduces stress, anxiety and depression.

Healthy Behaviors to Incorporate into Daily Life for Better Brain Health:

  • Take a break to stretch every day
  • Try a breathing exercise or meditation
  • Offer a random act of kindness to someone
  • Read or watch something funny
  • Turn off electronics 1 hour before bedtime
  • Choose water over sugary drinks
  • Take a walk in nature
  • Listen to music to relax
  • Think of 3 things you are thankful for
  • Call a friend

 

About Palm Health Foundation Palm Health Foundation is Palm Beach County’s community foundation for health. With the support of donors and a focus on results, the foundation builds strong community partnerships, respects diverse opinions, advocates for its most vulnerable neighbors and inspires innovative solutions to lead change for better health now and for generations to come. The foundation supports health equity for Palm Beach County residents of all backgrounds, heritage, education, incomes and states of well-being. Palm Health Foundation has invested more than $83 million in Palm Beach County health since 2001. For more information about Palm Health Foundation, visit palmhealthfoundation.org or call (561) 833-6333.

 

*Sources: Center for Brain Health & Reader’s Digest