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The Connection Between Exercise and Brain Health

The Connection Between Exercise and Brain Health: Boosting Brain Power One Step at a Time

As we age, our bodies go through a lot of changes. One of the most difficult things we can experience is cognitive decline. It is undoubtedly the biggest fear we have when it comes to getting older. But what if you could actually reverse cognitive decline and improve brain health as you age?

According to a study published in the Neurology journal, exercise activities such as biking, running, walking or any other activities that get your heart-pumping can take years off the age of your brain.

James Blumenthal, a clinical psychologist at Duke University and lead researcher on the study says about the study, “our operating model was that by improving cardiovascular risk, you’re also improving neurocognitive functioning. I don’t think there is another study that looked at separate and combined effects of exercise and diet slowing cognitive decline in patients who are vulnerable to develop dementia in later life.”

Many experts agree that lifestyle changes can make a significant impact on improving brain health, especially the implementation of a fitness program that focuses on cardiovascular health.

How Much Exercise Do You Need?

Researchers have found that it doesn’t take hardcore programs like PX90 or boot camps to see results either. Just about 20 minutes of brisk walking, cycling, swimming or other cardio based workouts can offer big results in boosting brain health.

Tips for Finding the Right Fit for You

Choose an activity you’ll enjoy doing because consistency is the key.

Get your workout done in the morning for clearer thinking for the day ahead.

Try new activities that include balance and coordination.

Get a workout buddy for motivation and accountability.

Change things up to avoid boredom.

What Else Can We Do?

We are all predisposed to some genetic influence that can affect all areas of our health, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t implement lifestyle choices that can delay the onset of those health concerns. What does that mean in real-world choices? Improving health, including cognitive health comes down to a few simple changes.

Eat a nutrient dense diet

Take supplements to fill decencies in your diet

Make fitness a priority

Find healthy ways to unwind

Make mindfulness part of your day

There are a variety of studies that show us that no matter what genes you inherit, your lifestyle choices can make a big impact on how you age. Choosing to be proactive in your health can add years to your life without illness holding you back from living a fun-filled life with those you love.


REFERENCES

https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/19/health/reverse-cognitive-aging-exercise-diet-study/index.html
http://n.neurology.org/content/92/3/e212
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470658/
https://www.brainhq.com/brain-resources/everyday-brain-fitness/physical-exercise
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3951958/
https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/regular-exercise-changes-brain-improve-memory-thinking-skills-201404097110


Maria Pease 

Health & Wellness Writer Bio

Maria Pease is a freelance health & wellness content writer based in Southport, North Carolina. She has written about health & wellness for more than twenty-five years and has partnered with a variety of companies doing the most amazing work. She loves being able to write about health topics that can change lives for the better.