Workouts for Brain Health
What is said about exercise and muscle in the body—use it or lose it—can be applied to exercise and the brain, too. In fact, according to a study done by the Department of Exercise Science at the University of Georgia, even briefly exercising for 20 minutes helps with information processing and memory functions.
Likewise, exercise increases heart rate, pumping more oxygen to the brain and releases certain hormones that can help nourish the growth of brain cells. Generally speaking, aerobic exercise is great for the brain, but certain exercises may be better than others for brain health because they involve physical and mental exercise simultaneously. Here are some tips:
Try cycling instead of running because it’s associated with enhanced brain function during and after the workout.
Opt for ballroom dancing or another kind of dance, which integrates physical and mental demands and has a larger impact on cognitive function, instead of an exercise that doesn’t involve coordination, rhythm or strategy.
Exercise in the morning. It increases brain activity, preps for mental stresses of the day and helps you retain new information, while reacting better to complex situations.
If you’re at the gym, go for circuit workouts because they quickly increase heart rate while constantly redirecting attention.
Throw in a quick round of jumping jacks.
Now, go ahead and try one or try them all to work out your body and your brain.
In order to avoid risk of injury, please seek advice directly from your physician, especially if you have existing medical issues, before beginning any exercise or nutritional program. Also, be sure to stretch after exercise to avoid muscle and joint tightness.
This information is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It should not be used in place of an individual consultation or examination or replace the advice of your health care professional and should not be relied upon to determine diagnosis or course of treatment.