Exercise is useful only for keeping your heart healthy and your figure neat and trim, right? Think again… literally, as the impact of exercise isn’t only skin deep. It is the best activity you can do to boost your brain power, keep yourself happy and push your motivation levels sky high, as this informative and evidence-packed infographic from fix.com reveals. Exercise is what experts would call a superfood if you could eat it.
- Exercise prevents some of the major cognitive disorders developing. According to research cited in the infographic, it can help prevent and treat dementia, Alzheimer’s and brain aging. It can also lower stress and help you deal better with anxiety and depression. The science bit: exercise boosts levels of brain-derived neutrotrophic factor (BDHF) which maintains and regenerates adult nerve cells.
- 30 minutes of running for undergraduates gave them faster reaction times for when they are sitting their exams in kung fu and vocabulary learning – great for linguists!
- Worried that getting older means you’ll forget who you are? Aerobic training increases connectivity in the temporal lobe. Take a walk, yes that’s walk, not run, around the block as a one-year study showed walkers improved their brain connectivity up to the level of college-age adults.
- If you think a one-year study isn’t rigorous enough then consider the findings of 25-year worth of research that found higher cardiovascular fitness was linked with better verbal memory and reaction time.
- And don’t forget the young. You might think that children are naturally brainy as their grey cells haven’t been deteriorated by the ravaging of time. Well, just 10 minutes of activity increased 13 – 16 year old’s concentration and attention.
Exercise will keep your brain young and active so that when you are old and grey you’ll remember that what kept you active is what kept you compos mentis.
BY WILLIAM LITTLE lifehack.org