Workout Wednesday – the Brain is a Muscle Too!

by DavalosMcCormack on August 5, 2009

Up till now Workout Wednesday has focused on the body, but there’s another big muscle that needs regular exercise too. It’s the brain. After all, what’s the use in having the body of an Adonis if you have the brain of a dolt!

A new study found that just as regular exercise benefits the body, so regular workouts benefit the brain. I’m not talking bicep curls helping bulk up your hippocampus, but this study, in Neurology, found that people who engage in activities that exercise the brain – things such as reading, writing and playing cards – can delay the risk of dementia.

And the more a person did, the more they were able to delay it.

Now this is not the first time that researchers have found a connection between mental activity and risk of dementia. But it’s just one more piece in the puzzle that shows that keeping your mind in good shape now can help you keep it in good shape for years, hopefully decades, to come.

For instance, earlier this year a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology found that taking part in activities that work the brain can delay or even prevent memory loss.

They found that people who engaged in regular social activities, reading, doing crossword puzzles or crafts in middle age were 40 percent less likely to suffer memory loss.

Aging is not a passive process. If you sit around your body gets weaker, muscles lose their strength and elasticity, and you are less able to do even the simplest things such as going for a walk.

The same applies to the brain. The less you do the less you will be able to do. It’s something to think about. See, that’s helping already!

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