I read an article about “experts” wondering how much exercise you need to keep your brain sharp. The experts answer it is unknown.
Not true! I once again felt like a kid raising my hand again in school, only to be told, “Let someone else answer, Maria.” Finally, when no one else does, I get to answer.
A new study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine by Joseph Northey, University of Canberra in Australia is the first to identify the key role played by resistance training, such as weights or core strength activity, in boosting brain function.
And 45 minutes is how much you need to keep your brain sharp. I can’t say this is the first study because Super Body, Super Brain is all about how resistance training combined with aerobics is what fosters neurogenesis (new brain cell growth).
They say until now, research focused on aerobic exercises like swimming, cycling, fast walking or jogging, as being good for the brain.
They now believe, however, that resistance training benefits the brain in different ways, stimulating additional areas of growth.
Study confirms it’s 45 minutes of resistance training for people in fifties or over.
The 45 minute mark of any activity is when you feel most alert and decisive.
Other brain benefits include slowing down cognitive decline.
Joseph Northey, who led the research at the University of Canberra, says doctors should be proactively prescribing exercise as a form of preventative medicine.
“Even exercising on one or two days of the week seemed to be effective, but the most important thing we found was the intensity of the exercise,” he said.
“It should be moderate, but aiming to get some vigorous intensity in there as well.”
In the April 2017 meta-analysis, University of Canberra researchers analyzed results of 39 previous studies on exercise and cognitive function in adults age 50 and older.
Although the studies look at different types of exercise, they all came to similar conclusions when compared side-by-side:
Getting up and moving at a moderate intensity for at least 45 minutes at a time was linked to improved cognition (memory and overall brain function included) — and the more days a week that person squeezed in those 45-minute sessions, the greater cognitive benefits they reaped!
Researchers also found aerobic exercise helps with learning, reasoning, reading, thinking. Resistance training helps with organizing, planning and memory.
They recommend mixing aerobic exercise and resistance training for best results.
Your 45 minutes can include walking, cleaning, bike riding, gardening, swimming, golf, tennis, dancing, bowling, shopping or anything else that gets you moving.
People work out for their body, but having a sharp mind is even more attractive.
It looks like my friend’s books are ahead of their time.
Michael Gonzalez-Wallace, author of Super Body, Super Brain already stated resistance training causes neurogenesis (new brain cells grow) and backed it up with scientific research. Dr. Gregory Lombardo from Columbia University, who serves on the board of Super Body, Super Brain with me, recommends it to patients.
I highly recommend reading:
Super Body, Super Brain by Michael Gonzalez-Wallace
The Brain Mechanic by Spencer Lord