Some fascinating research out of the University of Geneva has connected exercise with memory, and we think it’s information worth sharing!
FROM THE STUDY
The small study tested a group of 15 healthy but non-athletic men. They took a memory test three different times. The first was after 30 minutes of moderate cycle, the second was after 15 minutes of intense cycling, and the third was following a period of rest. Researchers also used MRI scans to look for any changes in brain function, as well as blood tests to measure endocannabinoid levels.
Results were clear – the faster the individuals moved, the more they stimulated the hippocampus, which is the area of the brain responsible for memory, and the caudate nucleus, which is involved in motor processes.
The same research team conducted another study that linked exercise to associative memory, though the connection was greater following moderate exercise and not the higher-intensity activity revealed in the previous study. The big takeaway is that not all sports have the same impact on memory.
Currently, the study’s authors are looking into how these discoveries might help those at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. They also point to the value of continuing sports activities in schools and whether scheduling specific periods of movement at strategic times of the school day might help improve learning.
Movement and exercise are important for us all. Sedentary lifestyles contribute to some of the pain Dr. McSweeney and Dr. Allen regularly treat in their patients, and it’s not uncommon for both doctors to recommend specific exercises, stretches, and activities to get people up and moving.
If you’re struggling with ongoing physical pain that makes the idea of exercise daunting, it’s a good idea to schedule a visit with Dr. McSweeney. Not only can she address your pain now, she can offer suggestions that will help prevent that pain from returning. From proper nutrition and supplementation to daily movement and stretches, you’d be surprised what a few lifestyles changes can do. A happy side effect could be an improved memory!