Bust a Move to Benefit Your Brain
A recent study with mice indicates that voluntary exercise actually slows brain decline by 50%! Physical activity improves the growth of new brain cells as well as neural transmission (the process by which brain cells communicate with each other). This translates into huge boosts to memory and comprehension!
“Exercise is the single best thing you can do for your brain in terms of mood, memory, and learning,” says Harvard Medical School psychiatrist John Ratey, author of the book, Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain. “Even 10 minutes of activity changes your brain.”
Most experts agree that 30 to 60 minutes of exercise per day is optimal, but if you spend a lot of time at a desk you’ll need to take short exercise breaks, ideally every 20 minutes. Set a timer and work up a two minute exercise routine comprised of stretches, dance moves, jogging in place, or anything else that gets your circulation going. Be sure to make it fun so you’ll stick with it!
A German study showed that the best exercise for the brain was any kind with complex moves involving the whole body, such as dance or sports like tennis. This might be because the complex moves make demands of your brain, but it could also be because using your whole body grants maximum benefit, both physical and mental.
The Best Movement
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