Exercise is one of the best ways of keeping the mind sharp
Researchers found that an energetic walk three times a week increased the size of the Hippocampus, the brainís memory hub. The researchers asked participants to take a brisk 40-minute walk three times a week for one year.
After a year, they found that parts of the brain, including the Hippocampus, had grown by up to 2 per cent. This is significant as generally our brain shrinks with age.
"You donít need highly vigorous physical activity to see these effects. This (2% brain size increase) may sound like it is a modest amount but itís like reversing the age clock by a couple of years.", according to Lead researcher Dr Kirk Erickson, from the University of Pittsburgh.
"Physical activity seems to be one of the most positive approaches for affecting cognitive brain health and cognition . . . . throughout (your) lifespan."
You donít need highly vigorous physical activity to see these effects. Moderate levels of exercise several times a week yield enormous improvements over a period of just several months.
The key seems to be regulary sustained physical aerobic activity like hiking, running, swimming, cycling and walking.<-- back to top