Honestly, yes! Exercise is the fountain of youth. The old adage, “If you don’t use it, you lose it,” has taken on a whole new meaning and we are not just talking about muscles tone. Study after study has shown how exercise – even moderate exercise – can have a marked improvement in your overall health – including your brain. New research reveals just how much of an impact exercise can have on brain health as we age. A recent study found that older adults who reported either light or no exercise at all experienced a cognitive decline equal to 10 more years of aging when compared to people who were moderate to intense exercisers. Yes, you read that right…10 YEARS!
In a questionnaire, 900 participants, whose average age was 71, were asked how long and how often they had engaged in physical activity during the previous two weeks. An average of seven years later, each subject took tests evaluating memory and thinking skills and got a brain MRI. Five years after that, the participants took the memory and thinking tests again. In all, 90 percent of the group reported light exercise, such as walking and yoga, or no exercise at all. The remaining 10 percent were categorized as high intensity exercisers and reported participating in activities like running, aerobics, and calisthenics.
After reviewing the data, the researchers found that of the people who had no signs of memory and thinking problems after the first set of cognitive test had high levels of activity, while those who reported low activity levels showed a greater decline over five years. Even after factoring in life style choices that could affect brain health, including smoking, alcohol use, high blood pressure and body mass index, this difference remained!
So what do you need to do to try to achieve these results? Researchers say to move around as much as they can…and this is where Body Within can help! If you are interested in moving more and using physical activity to feel better, but just don’t know where to start…contact us! We are committed to helping people become stronger, healthier, and more conditioned…and I guess we can say younger as well…because, it is what we do!