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How Exercise Can Benefit Your Brain

Aerobic exercise, resistance training (such as weight lifting), and tai chi can all boost brain function in people older than 50, concludes a review published today in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Those mind-strengthening benefits even provided a boost to those who were already suffering from mild cognitive impairment, which is often a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

The researchers also found that “multicomponent” programs--which combine aerobic exercise and resistance training as recommended by the U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines—were particularly effective in boosting brain health.

Resistance training and aerobic exercise each release different types of compounds that “help support the growth of neurons in the brain,” says study author Joe Northey, a Ph.D. candidate in exercise physiology at the University of Canberra Research Institute for Sport and Exercise in Australia. “Doing both may be providing a ‘sweet spot’ for brain health.”

“What’s good for the body is good for the brain,” says exercise physiologist and neuroscientist Dianna Purvis Jaffin, Ph.D., director of strategy and programs at the Brain Performance Institute at the University of Texas at Dallas. “We know that people who have higher levels of cardiovascular fitness tend to have larger brain volume, but both aerobic exercise and strength training are important.”

A Workout Routine for Your Brain

If you’re thinking about starting a workout regimen (or amending your current routine), you can often find supervised programs through a hospital, community recreation center, or gym.

But while the new study only included such supervised programs—where elements like frequency, intensity, and duration were monitored and controlled—you can reap these cognitive benefits by exercising on your own, too, says Northey.

“Just discuss your plans to exercise with your doctor first to make sure it’s safe,” he says.

To maximize the brain benefits of working out, keep these key takeaways from the study in mind:

Include resistance training along with aerobic exercise. Current U.S. exercise guidelines recommend getting at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity aerobic exercise a week and doing strength training two or three times weekly. (At a moderate level, you can maintain a conversation while you work out. During vigorous exercise, it will be difficult to talk.)

Work out for 45 to 60 minutes per session. Researchers found the biggest benefit came from at least 45 minutes of exercise, although shorter sessions are certainly helpful as well. If you’re working out more intensely, you may be able to do it for less time. (Northey is currently studying how high-intensity interval training—alternating between hard and easy bouts of exercise—can impact brain power.)

(Booklet printing, printing in China).

Exercise on most days. While the review found beneficial brain effects with any level of frequency of exercise, a regular, consistent routine will improve your fitness level and muscle mass, two things that are protective as you age.

Consider starting with tai chi. Although there were fewer studies with tai chi, researchers found it does enhance cognitive abilities and it can be good for people who are new to working out or aren’t as mobile. (The study also looked at yoga, but researchers weren’t able to accurately gauge its impact on the brain due to a lack of good quality studies.)

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脑网络节点属性统计分析

Hi,

麻烦问一下,在对节点分析进行统计时,比如组间比较,我们很难像分析全脑属性一样把具不同sparcity的网络都分析一遍,因此都是取的某一个范围内网络节点属性的均值对吗?如果是的话,哪一个范围更为合适呢?或者有无研究专门探讨过这个问题的呢?非常感谢~~~

DPARSF Error/Bug Report Parallel Pool

Hi All,

I just wanted to share my experience about an error I got in DPARSF in case anyone else comes across it or in case the DPARSF creators want to fix this in future versions.

I have been running DPARSF jobs and they seem to fail a portion of the time somewhere after the initiation of the BET step.

Before this step, DPARSF requires user input (in my batch at least) saying "No co* images found" or something along those lines.

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Start DPARSFA from NIFTI images

To whom it may concern,

I would like to start preprocessing in DPARSFA from Nifti images so I placed the images under the FunImg folder (which contains a folder for each subject). However, when I change the 'Starting Directory Name' to FunImg. I get the following warning: 'Please arrange each subject's DICOM images in one directory and then put them in FunRaw directory under the working directory' and the gui automatically revert to FunRaw (which I do not have as I want to start from nifti images).

Could you please advise how to solve this problem?

Thank you,

R package for graph theory analysis of MRI data

Dear DPABI users, (apologies for cross-post)

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Between group FC

Dear Yan,

Although I am still learning, I am very happy with your software for the resting state analyses.

However, I have a doubt. I performed the FC analyes considering the ROI1. Then, I used SPM to compare two groups G1 and G2. At the whole brain, I obtain a significative difference between the two groups in the cluster C1.

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Vote for Dr. Xi-Nian Zuo for OHBM Council Chair

Dear members of the R-fMRI Network,

As a current member of OHBM, you are cordially invited to participate in the council election of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping (OHBM). The elected nominees will represent you to work on the OHBM Council and Program Committee.

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