Do You Have A Healthy Brain? The Secret to Mental Agility

Jan 21 19:02 2005 Catherine Calder Print This Article

We all know to exercise our bodies to keep fit, but how often do you think about ... your brain? And what type of exercise does it need anyway? What are the facts? What is the secret to mental

We all know to exercise our bodies to keep fit,Guest Posting but how
often do you think about exercising your brain? And what
type of exercise does it need anyway? What are the facts?
What is the secret to mental agility?

Keeping mentally active will keep your brain in good shape.
Getting older does not mean that you have to be forgetful!

Recent research into Alzheimer's disease found that people
who were less active between the ages of 20 and 60 years are
almost 4 times more likely to develop the disease. The
brain, like the rest of the body, needs to be kept active to
keep healthy.

You exercise your body to keep it in shape. Now it has been
shown that exercising your brain can keep it in shape too.

That leaves us with the question of what to do to keep our
brains active. The research discovered that how you spend
your leisure time can affect the health of your brain.

Leisure activities can be divided into -

Passive activities, which include watching TV, participating
in social activities, and listening to music.

Intellectual activities are reading, painting, playing a
musical instrument, woodworking.

Physical activities, for example, gardening, playing sport,
working out at the gym, walking, jogging.

The only 'activity' that the Alzheimer's patients had
performed more frequently than the control group was
watching TV!

The research team was lead by Robert Friedland, professor of
neurology, University Hospitals of Cleveland. He said "A
relative increase in the amount of time devoted to
intellectual activities from early adulthood (ages 20-39) to
mid-adulthood (ages 40-60) was associated with a significant
decrease in the probability of having Alzheimer's disease
later in life."

An intellectual or physical hobby stimulates the brain and
may reduce neurodegeneration as seen in diseases such as
Alzheimer's. So sitting watching the TV isn't enough for
your brain, you need to keep it active. One way is by
learning new things.

Many of the finalists in the Learning in Later Life Campaign
2000 to find England's oldest and most inspiring learners
had art and painting as their hobby.

England's Oldest Learner was Fred Moore who was then aged
107 years. Fred continued with art classes until he died at
the age of 109. The manager of his residential home said
"Fred was a remarkable chap. He kept his memory, going back
to the death of Queen Victoria, and always retained his
great sense of humor."

So it's official then, learning a new hobby is good for you.
Fancy learning to paint? Painting can be done indoors and
outdoors, as well as by yourself or in a group.

It is never too late to start. Local night classes offer a
range of options. Have a look online too.

Remember you can have a healthy brain and enjoy a hobby too.
Don't leave it until tomorrow, begin today!

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About Article Author

Catherine Calder
Catherine Calder

Catherine Calder is the author of the Acrylic Painting Course, a No-Draw step-by-step course ideal for anyone who wants to learn how to paint.
Visit http://www.learnanddo.com/acrylic.asp for a free preview of the course that shows you step-by-step all the stages to completing your first picture.
Catherine also sells limited edition prints of her original paintings from her on-line gallery
http://www.scotprints.co.uk

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