The majority (59 per cent) of Australians waste more than an hour on average each working day due to lack of focus or concentration – that’s approximately six hours a week per employee gone and collectively, almost 23,000 years lost each month across the country – according to new research^ commissioned by Flordis, a Soho Flordis International (SFI) brand.
The survey of 1,500 locals also uncovered that only a quarter (23 per cent) believe they tap into the full potential of their mind at least once a day.
Liisa Lewis, Global Marketing Manager – Cognitive Health at Flordis said: “In this hyper-connected world, our brains are constantly whirring, but our research shows that for many people (42 per cent), sustained concentration is a challenge. We all want sharper focus, concentration and memory, but we’re not actively working to improve cognitive health.”
According to the Flordis research, the priority for Australians is general physical health, with 92 per cent of respondents focussing on exercise – more than half (63 per cent) committing to intense physical activity and almost all (94 per cent) undertaking low intensity physical activity each week.
“While physical exercise is key for cognitive health,1 we also need to specifically invest time in loving our minds to make a greater difference to our quality of life as we age. 85 per cent of people recognise activities such as brain training are important, but only 16 per cent will dedicate half an hour or more to these activities each day on average.
“In fact, despite the rise of the mindfulness movement, 44 per cent of people said they never practice mindfulness techniques and over a third (36 per cent) don’t dedicate any time to learning new skills. This is despite research showing practicing these helps engage cognitive skills, mental sharpness and concentration to support cognitive health over time,2” said Lewis.
It would seem, however, that Australians do have time to spare, with seven in 10 (68 per cent) revealing they have four or more hours each week of ‘downtime’, and almost half of these respondents (a third of the total population) having 10 or more hours.
“It only takes simple changes to make a big impact on cognitive health – but it is a long-term commitment. Pick up some brain training exercises for your commute, take up meditation, have a go at that hobby you’ve always wanted to try or go to that photography or sculpting course.
“From our research, we also know that for most people (55 per cent), natural medicines are a consideration for maintaining cognitive health and mental sharpness at all stages of life, with 42 per cent currently taking supplements for this reason,” Lewis said.
Lewis noted that when it comes to research on natural medicines in this area, a specific extract of Bacopa monnieri, referred to as CDRI 08®, is shown to have a positive effect on memory, concentration and learning retention.
Not all natural medicines are created equal however, and can vary considerably depending on how they are produced and the ingredients used, meaning it’s important for consumers to do their research to find clinical evidence for claims, or talk to their healthcare professional.
Additional findings from the research include:
- More than a third of the population (34 per cent) waste more than one hour each working day with five per cent admitting to losing over four hours
- Just half (49 per cent) of respondents spend time (up to two hours a week) on brain training
- Over a third (36 per cent) of people who have a household income under $80,000 said they are constantly tapping into the full potential of their mind, compared to just 11 per cent of those who have a household income higher than $80,000
- Distractions are more likely to affect women with 34 per cent occasionally losing focus, 16 percent frequently effected and four per cent always finding this an issue – compared to 31 percent, 16 per cent and two per cent of men respectively
- Younger people are more likely to lose focus and be distracted, with 50 per cent of 18-34 year olds admitting they frequently have this issue
“Our minds are amazing. But it takes work to keep them that way. Pick up that crossword or start speaking the language you've always wanted to learn. Make the time to love your mind," said Lewis.
ABOUT THE EXPERT
For more information on Flordis and the research, visit flordis.com.au. Flordis is dedicated to providing a distinctive clinically researched range of natural healthcare products to assist better health outcomes. Flordis follows a series of strict quality control practices to help deliver a consistent medicine from one batch to the next. It’s this specific medicine that is tested in clinical trials and used by millions of people worldwide. Flordis is part of the SFI family of brands and endorsed with the SFI mark representing an unwavering commitment to quality, driven by our passion for applying science to nature.
1 Northey JM, Cherbuin N, Pumpa KL, et al. Exercise interventions for cognitive function in adults older than 50: a systematic review with meta-analysis, Br J Sports Med Published Online First. 24 April 2017. doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2016-096587 (http://bjsm.bmj.com/content/early/2017/03/30/bjsports-2016-096587).
2 Malinowski, P & Shalamanova L. J Cogn Enhanc. 2017. doi:10.1007/s41465-017-0022-7 (https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s41465-017-0022-7); and Park DC et al. The Impact of Sustained Engagement on Cognitive function in Older Adults, Psych. Science. 2013;25(1):103-112. (https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797613499592)
^About the Research:
This research was commissioned by Flordis to explore Australian’s consideration of cognitive health, existing habits and priorities when it comes to health and wellbeing. 1,500 Australians from a nationally representative sample completed the omnibus survey between Tuesday 25 April to Friday 28 April 2017.