Mental decline is, unfortunately, a normal part of aging. Memory, thinking, and decision-making skills all weaken as you get older. Be that as it may, you don’t just have to sit back and accept this. In fact, you can actually slow down the process – and even reverse it – by staying in shape. And while we’ve known this for some time, exciting new research findings now allow us to quantify this improvement.
Here’s the story…
Overweight and sedentary adults (with an average age of 49) were enrolled in study to assess how exercise improved their cognitive skills. They were instructed to work out twice per week on an exercise bike. Additionally, they added resistance training to their routine. After four months they lost significant weight and their exercise capacity increased by 15% (i.e. they could work out 15% harder/longer; this has to do with the body’s capacity to take up oxygen).
As expected, their cognitive function also improved. The improvement was directly proportional to their weight loss and increase in exercise capacity. In other words, the fitter their bodies became, the better their brains functioned. The researchers attributed this to an increase in blood flow.
Now, isn’t that amazing?
I’m talking about how simple things such as a good diet and sensible exercise program can literally “turn back the clock”. And this goes with everything, not just your brain. It makes your skin look younger, gives you a lot more energy, and in general makes you a happier person.
Personally, information such as this makes me ecstatic. Why? Because this knowledge puts me in the driver’s seat. Sure, I can’t stop the candles from piling up on my birthday cake year after year. But, I can do plenty to keep a smile on my face throughout – knowing full well that I’ll stay healthy into my golden years. This should make you ecstatic as well.
And another thing to be grateful about is the fact that it’s never too late to get in shape. The average age of the study participants was 49. There were some younger than this and some older. But what mattered at the end of the day as far as brain function is concerned was how fit they got – not their age.
So, if you’re reading this and feel that it’s too late to start – cast that though away immediately. Get on a healthy diet and establish a sensible workout routine. By doing so, you too will experience all the benefits of staying fit and healthy into old age.