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Exercise May Slow Brain Aging By Up To 10 Years

 

It’s no secret that exercise is beneficial for mind, body, and soul. In this article, we explain just exactly how and why exercise is the most inexpensive and rewarding activity for your brain.


In a study authored by Clinton B. Wright, MD, MS, of the University of Miami in Miami, Fla., it has been found that exercise may slow the process of brain aging by up to 10 years. The study looked at data collected from 876 individuals from a study conducted in Manhattan, NY.


 
“When looking at people who had no signs of memory and thinking problems at the start of the study, researchers found that those reporting low [exercise] activity levels [such as walking and yoga,] showed a greater decline over five years compared to those with high [exercise] activity levels [such as running, aerobics, or calisthenics] on tests of how fast they could perform simple tasks and how many words they could remember from a list. The difference was equal to that of 10 years of aging. (American Academy of Neurology).”


 
Exercise has been proven to immediately improve your brain’s memory retention capability. Studies suggest that parts of the brain that control thinking and memory (the prefrontal and medial temporal cortex) have bigger volumes in people who exercise compared to people who don’t.

 
Even more interestingly, “engaging in a program of regular exercise of moderate intensity over six months or a year is associated with an increase in the volume of selected brain regions,” according to Dr. Scott McGinnis, a neurologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and an instructor in neurology at Harvard Medical School.

 

If you do not exercise regularly three to four times a week, starting now is the best thing you can do for your mental health. We encourage you to find a routine that isn’t so intense as to cause injury, but one that pushes you out of your comfort zone for 30-40 minutes.


If you’d like more information about how exercise can benefit your mental health, feel free to leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you!

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