HOW EXERCISE AFFECTS YOUR BRAIN!

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Updated: July 20, 2019

EXERCISE AND YOUR BRAIN

by

Mark “COACH ROZY” Roozen

It May Help You Pay Attention

The alpha peak frequency (part of the EEG test or electroencephalogram) measures your ability to focus and pay attention. It seems to go up after you do some intense exercise.  So get after that HITT Training!

It May Help You Remember

Aerobic exercise like walking, jogging, or gardening may help your brain’s area that’s linked to memory and learning — grow.  Some studies suggest the regrowth is stronger if you like the activity you’re doing. So find something you enjoy and bust a move.

It Helps Depression and Anxiety

Aerobic exercise helps with depression and anxiety so well, your doctor or therapist may suggest it as a treatment.  they do say that it can be months, not weeks, so don’t give up if you don’t notice an improvement in a day or week!

It Can Make Your Brain More “Flexible”

Neuroplasticity is the ability of your brain to change when you learn and experience new things. Scientists believe both aerobic exercise and weight training seem to help make more flexible, or “plastic,” brains.

Helps You Avoid Dementia

People who don’t exercise much are more likely to get Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. That’s in part because exercise helps prevent many of the things that are linked to dementia, like:

  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Depression

When experts look at brain activity, they see more white and gray brain matter and less diseased tissue are all signs of better brain health when someone exercises. So again – MOVE!

Improves Blood Flow

Aerobic exercise helps blood get to your brain. Scientists also believe strong blood flow helps nourish the brain in a way that slows mental decline. Scientists continue to try to figure out exactly how this works.

You Can Connect the Dots

Research suggests exercise improves your ability to organize and interpret information, and act in a way that makes sense — something called “executive function.” Just one session of exercise can start the process.  So BEGIN!

It Help with Sleep Which Helps the Mind

We know exercise can help you keep an even mood, wind down at bedtime, and establish a healthy sleep-wake cycle (circadian rhythm). The exact brain effects aren’t always clear, but people who exercise more tend to get more “slow wave” sleep — the kind of deep sleep that helps revitalize your brain and body.

How Much Exercise Makes a Difference?

Standard recommendations call for 30 minutes of moderate exercise on most days of the week. That’s a great place to start. But doubling that up may give your brain even more benefits. The length of each individual session matters, too. Research shows that some of the best benefits come in exercise sessions that last 45-60 minutes.

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