Saturday, February 4, 2012

Walk to Exercise Your Memory Muscle

Feature Entry: Walk to Exercise Your Memory Muscle

Memory is a muscle? Yep, it’s true; moreover, like all muscles it can be improved by walking. According to neuroscientists at the University of California we can reduce Alzheimer’s risk by 25 percent by increasing physical activity from “low” to “moderate.” Oh, a another name for the memory muscle is .... your brain.

Other scientists agree. According to Art Kramer, professor of psychology and neuroscience at the University of Illinois, "If you do only one thing to keep your brain young, exercise." His findings support the theory that “Higher exercise levels can reduce dementia risk by 30 to 40 percent compared with low activity levels, and physically active people tend to maintain better cognition and memory than inactive people. They also have substantially lower rates of different forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.”

Here is how it seems to work. Walking helps your hippocampus, the region of the brain involved in memory formation. As you age, your hippocampus shrinks, leading to memory loss. Walking has been shown to reverse this process.

How much walking is needed for the prescription to work? Eric Larson, M.D., executive director of Group Health Research Institute in Seattle recommends 150 minutes a week of moderate activity. States Larson, "In our research as little as 15 minutes of regular exercise three times per week helped maintain the brain."

To see more tips for maintaining a healthy ageless brain check Beth Howard’s excellent article in the Feb/March 2012 issue of AARP The Magazine.

Money Walker

Today's Weight = 177.0 lbs.

Today's Money Find = $.81

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