Study Shows Exercise/Brain Health Link (Again!)

Craig Stoltz Health Guide
  • Yet another study--this time a big analysis of other high-quality studies--demonstrates the link between fitness and brain health.


    Three things you need to know


    1. This study was a powerful analysis of previous high quality research on the issue, published by the highly regarded international Cochrane Library. It demonstrates a clear link between aerobic fitness and brain function, including memory, attention and cognitive ability.


    2. The studies considered were clinical trials that put older adults on aerobic exercise programs and monitored their brain function over time. This means it's more reasonable to assume that doing the program increased brain function--not that fitter people simply have sharper brains.

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    3. Mounds of previous research has shown links between fitness, exercise, physical activity and sustained or improved brain function, including in people with dementias such as Alzheimer's. This study adds another credible report to the pile.


    So: If you haven't taken action yet, quit stalling. If you're concerned about declining brain function, dementia or even Alzhiemer's, start a program. It's not to late to see significant benefits. And even those with dementia can see improvement of symptoms.


    Of course, those with dementia or cognitive problems need a carefully constructed, safe exercise regimen. Check in with one of our experts or useful online articles for that.


    And for a broader view, U.S. News has an excellent rundown on recent findings about exercise, aerobic fitness and brain health.

Published On: April 24, 2008