英文虎報 2007-10-08 Local P12 Scarlett Chiang
 
Memory power lies in pursuit of happiness
 
According to theory, happy people should have more dopamine and adrenaline in the brain which strengthen their
memory power
 
MIKI LEE YUK-KUEN,
 
CHAIRMAN OF THE HONG KONG MEMORY STUDY ASSOCIATION Being happy is the key to strengthening
memory power, a survey shows.
 
The Hong Kong Memory Study Association has found that 90 percent of 2,300 people who said they were unhappy
complained that their memory had worsened.
 
The survey, which began in April, was aimed at determining the effect various factors had on memory.
 
Among the respondents who said their memory was improving, about 70 percent said they were usually happy or
very happy.
 
Association chairman Miki Lee Yuk-kuen said the findings showed that memory is affected by the amount of
dopamine and adrenaline in the brain.
 
``According to theory, happy people should have more dopamine and adrenaline in the brain which strengthen their
memory power,'' she said.
 
Lee suggested that people should keep themselves happy while memorizing to make the process more effective.
 
The association also found that diet is another factor affecting memory as about one-third of the respondents with
poor memory said they dined out at least twice a day.
 
On the other hand, more than 40 percent of those who said they had good memory said they normally had three
meals a day at home.
 
According to Lee, the food served in restaurants might contain a lot of monosodium glutamate - a chemical used for
improving food flavor - but excessive consumption of the chemical might impede the flow of blood to the brain.
 
``In the long run, this will affect the brain's ability to memorize,'' she said.
 
The association also found that long working hours, lack of sleep and a stressful lifestyle may hamper memory.
 
Lee said headaches might not be as harmful to memory as some people think.
 
The association said that headaches are not a very influential factor because the survey shows that about 33 percent
of the respondents who said they had good memory often experienced headaches, while 25 percent of those with
bad memory also had headache problems. ``A headache is not as serious as insomnia in affecting our memory,'' Lee
said.
 
Among the respondents who said they had a maximum of six hours' sleep daily, 26 percent said their memory was
improving, while 41 percent said theirs was getting worse.
 
Lee urged people to be more optimistic and spend less time working to maintain their memory power.
 
香港記憶學總會
電話︰8101-6860
傳真:3020-6956
網址︰http://www.hkmsa.org