Many of us try to keep our minds sharp by doing puzzles and learning new things. But there are certain daily activities and habits that can lower a person’s IQ, and they may not even realize it. Find out how you could be sabotaging your own intelligence without realizing it.

Everyday habits that are lowering your IQ

Research has found that the following things and habits lower IQ and ruin cognitive functions . Some of these may surprise you, while others make perfect sense.

1. Eat a diet rich in saturated fat

diet high in saturated fat can make it difficult for our brains to function and lower IQ . Studies have shown that fatty diets can affect our cognitive ability, reduce our reaction times, damage our memory and even cause feelings of depression . Saturated fat found in processed meat, cakes, and cookies is the worst culprit.

The University of Montreal study found that a high-fat diet can also affect our moods, and that eating high-fat foods can be addictive and make us want to eat more.

2. Perform many tasks at once

Earl Miller is a neuroscientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who specializes in the area of ​​multitasking and divided attention. He cautions that:

“The brain is not designed for multitasking. When people think they are multitasking, they are actually switching from one task to another very quickly, and each time they do so, there is a cognitive cost. “

Our frontal lobes can only deal with a certain amount of information at a time. It is similar to when you open too many tabs on your internet browser and the computer freezes.

Multitasking means that we are less efficient in everything we do. It also means that we don’t get deep enough into the task to make real progress. So if you want to do deep work, turn off notifications and just focus on what you’re doing.


3. Regular use of the TV

An Austrian study confirmed something we had long suspected: television may be rotting our brains . Well, at least some reality shows and certain shows that populate cable TV.

4. Interrupted sleep

Studies on hamsters have shown that disruption of sleep patterns can affect our circadian rhythm , our daytime and nighttime energy patterns. The effects can last up to a month and can affect learning and cognitive function. Perhaps this is why so many new parents find it difficult to focus.

If you can’t get a good night’s sleep, it can have other negative health effects, such as increased cravings for junk food and higher levels of stress. Sticking to a regular rest routine can help improve learning and cognitive function , as well as general health.

5. Being stressed all the time

Having an overly busy schedule and feeling stressed all the time can have a negative effect on overall health and brain function. When we are stressed, our bodies are flooded with hormones that affect our ability to think clearly.

Brendan Kelley, a neurologist at Ohio State University, warns that: ” High levels of stress are not only associated with poorer brain function, but can even be linked to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease .”

Stress reduction techniques such as exercise and meditation have been shown to help reduce stress and its negative effects.

6. Eat too much sugar

A study at UCLA showed that constant sugar consumption for just six weeks ” slows down the brain, making memory and learning difficult .” High-sugar diets were found to affect brain cell function and cognitive ability. Allen Towfigh also explains that ” diabetics have a higher incidence of dementia .”

And before you think that just cutting back on soda will do the trick, keep in mind that fruit is also a source of sugar. The UCLA study used fructose, a simple sugar found in fruits, honey, and vegetables.

This does not mean that eating fruits and vegetables is bad for you, of course it is not, but that foods high in sugar should be eaten in moderation and as part of a healthy and balanced diet. Also, eating omega 3 fatty acids, found in flaxseed oil and oily fish like mackerel and trout, can protect your brain against these damages.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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