Physical fitness has recently been associated with brain health. Many researchers have found that exercise is a form of prevention for many ailments. Convincing evidence shows that exercise can help the brain resist shrinkage and improve creativity and cognitive abilities. It has also been found that exercise promotes the process call neurogenesis—the ability of your brain to adapt and grow new brain cells, no matter your age.
Exercise also promotes our mental health by boosting hormones and neurotransmitters linked to your mood control, including endorphins, dopamine, serotonin, glutamate, and GABA. It also normalizes insulin resistance. Canadian researchers have also found most recently that high-intensity workouts can help boost memory through improving hippocampal function.
This finding could prove an important strategy against Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers also recently concluded that aerobic exercise could increase the left hippocampal volume, that which benefits specific memory functions.
The idea that the brain is able to rejuvenate and regenerate throughout a lifetime is contrary to what we have been taught throughout the years. We usually are told that once neurons die, there is no regeneration. Because of this flawed understanding, it has been thought that memory decline is a normal part of aging.
The real key lies in being proactive by eating a healthy diet—including plenty of healthy fats (such as animal-based omega-3’s)—and staying physically active.Studies have shown that exercise can boost brain matter in the hippocampal as well as preserve it in the frontal, parietal, and temporal cortexes—preventing cognitive deterioration.
Your right and left hippocampi are both parts of the limbic system, which plays important roles in the organization from short-term to long-term memory storage. It is also where the memorization of names, verbal/memory function, spatial relationship memories, and nonverbal memory functions occur.
The recent data shows that exercise routines including variations of cardio exercises helped prevent the decrease of the hippocampi over time and that aerobic exercise can be useful to prevent age-related hippocampal deterioration in order to maintain neuron health.
Exercise has also been shown to increase a metabolic signal that aids mitochondrial biogenesis. A high-sugar diet is considered toxic to mitochondria—which not only help us produce energy, but also power our cells and determine which cells remain living or die.
This idea is causing Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases to be considered mitochondrial diseases, meaning they can be acquired by exposure to toxins, or even through toxic effects of mitochondria based upon your diet.
It seems as though those who benefit from aerobic exercise gain a wider variety of good bacteria in the gut. This correlates to overall better health, a more balanced immune system, and reduced inflammation.
In 2015, data was published to show that a fitness program could reduce the risk of dementia, even with those who are high at risk. Through a period of addressing diet, training exercises, and metabolic risks, the group of candidates scored significantly better on a test showing mental functioning than did the control group.
This study is the first that shows an intensive program of lifestyle changes may prevent cognitive decline in those who are at a greater risk of dementia. This is concurrent with previous research that shows there are links between cognitive decline, diet, heart health, and fitness in the elderly. One way to help could also be introducing ketone supplements into your daily supplement protocol.
Connections between physical fitness and brain health are profound. Here are a few more ways in which this is a factor, besides those already mentioned above.
Improved blood flow to the brain – The brain needs a certain amount of oxygen to aids its proper function. This explains the brain/heart connection—what is good for one is also good for the other. The increased blood flow from exercise allows for your brain to function better, almost immediately. The result is more focus after a workout—improving productivity at both work and home.
Reduction of plaque formation – By changing the way damaging proteins reside in the brain exercise can help slow the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
Decreasing BMP – BMP can slow down the creation of new neurons, thus reducing neurogenesis. With high levels of BMP, the brain grows slower. Exercise reduces this impact and allows your adult stem cells to continue to perform their vital functions that keep your brain agile.
Boosts noggin – Exercise also increases another brain protein called noggin—acting as a BMP antagonist. This complex interplay between noggin and BMP appear to be powerful factors that help ensure the youthfulness and proliferation of your neurons.
Lowers inflammation—Exercise lowers levels of cytokines associated with obesity and chronic inflammation. Both of these can adversely affect brain function.
It is really never too late to reap the benefits of exercise. Exercise, especially an ideal program of high-intensity cardio and strength training, show themselves to have a high impact on your health. The major benefit is preventative – both dementia and cancer are two of a very long list of problems that can arise in your health from chronic inactivity.
The earlier you begin, the more long-term are your rewards. Think of it as an investment in your future—the future of both your physical and mental well-being. The brain has the ability to grow and regenerate throughout your entire life—exercise is perhaps the best way to ensure this continues productivity and health!
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Amanda Maurois- Proud mompreneur, graphic designer, enthusiastic traveller and blogger who loves to write about healthy lifestyle, entrepreneurship, time management and more. She is also a lead writer and editor at HowTonight lifestyle magazine. Follow Amanda Twitter @mauroisamanda2
Top 6 Healthy Teavana Replacements Tea is one of the most refreshing beverages, and this is evidenced by the many tea joints that are opening up all over the place. Additionally, tea has also been found to have immense health benefits. This is good news especially for people who are very conscious of what they eat or drink. Although Teavana was a household name where maybe you preferred to go and get a refreshing cup—either iced or hot, there are thankfully other establishments that have replaced it. Listed below are some of the best alternatives to get that coveted cup of tea that you so much love.
DAVIDs TEA has expanded and has over 200 outlets both in the Canadian and American markets. With Teavana closure, DAVIDs TEA has become a household name where tea lovers go to enjoy a cup of their favorite beverage. The stores offer a variety of teas including black tea, green tea, white tea, herbal tea, rooibos, oolong and mate. Its friendly and super helpful staff is another factor that makes the experience of taking tea at DAVIDs TEA very pleasant. Some of the benefits of the tea include; weight loss, acne clearing, boosting body energy and memory boosting.
Teami tea is a company that offers high quality natural loose leaf tea right at your doorstep. One of their founding principles is providing a product that delivers the results that it promises. In the case of Teami tea, it promises to help one slim, in other words, it’s a slimming tea. The tea helps you to lose weight among other benefits like colon cleansing, detoxifying your body and helping you sleep like a baby. It is an excellent alternative to Teavana due to its great taste and other numerous health benefits.
Lipton’s tea is a vintage drink which is well known, and its popularity has only soared with the closure of Teavana. One of the well-known benefits of green tea is that it contains catechins which have a lot of antioxidants. The antioxidants help prevent heart diseases, increase metabolism and reduce body weight by helping the body burn down excess fat. Lipton’s tea is a well-known brand that offers pure green tea—although its taste isn’t all that great. On the other hand, however, it has flavored green tea that tastes a lot better which makes it easier for you to enjoy a cup of the healthy tea.
Breakaway matcha is one of the green tea brands that have a superb taste. It is a green tea from Japan that is ground to perfection and with care to ensure that the original flavor is preserved. Matcha sells the tea which has been around for centuries now in four blends. Its taste matches perfectly with its electric green color and has a wonderful smell and aftertaste. Some of its health benefits include memory boost, body detoxification and acts as a stress reliever.
Mahalo tea is a brand of tea that has constantly been expanding since the closure of Teavana tea. The tea originates from Hawaii and has a unique taste since it is blended with pineapple, papaya, mango and coconut fruits from Hawaii. Mahalo tea is an online retailer which offers a selection of green tea, rooibos tea, black tea, oolong tea and custom blends. Not only is it delicious, but it also has impressive benefits such as reducing chronic diseases, inflammatory conditions, lowering cholesterol levels and prevents pain on muscles after a workout.
It obtains its name from the two flowers that it’s mainly brewed from- lavender and chamomile flowers. This tea works wonders on the digestive and nervous systems because of the unique medicinal properties of the flowers. This makes it very important to use when stressed out or in a tense mood. The tea has a floral and bittersweet taste and when the going gets tough, go for this tea!
Tea is a very famous beverage, consumed by two-thirds of the world population. Tea is perfect when you are feeling low, cold or when you are in the mood for fun. Do not drink any tea, check out its health benefits first and the above-listed teas are perfectly healthy. Have healthy fun!21
Most of us are pretty much already aware that exercise is good for the body, but when you understand how exercise changes the body, it makes getting off your bed and into the gym much easier. The body is a complex machine, and a lot of changes typically take place when you start working out.
When you exercise, one tends to breathe faster than usual, and this has prompted so many people to ask the question: How is blood flow related to lung function during exercise? Well, the answer to this question is easy but in requires a better comprehension of the changes that occur in the body when we exercise.Blood Flow Related To Lung Function During ExerciseHow Is Blood Flow Related To Lung Function During Exercise?Importance of Breathing Properly During ExerciseHelps in Maintaining PostureImproves PerformanceImproves Fat LossNasal Breathing vs. Mouth BreathingNasal Breathing.Mouth Breathing. Conclusion
As mentioned earlier, a lot happens to your body during exercise, and the very first thing you will probably notice is that you are out of breath and your pulse is high. However disconcerting it may feel, it is a normal body response. If that is the case, then how is blood flow related to lung function during exercise?
When you exercise, the blood vessels are dilated so as to increase the volume of oxygen carried in the blood, and as a result, the lungs work harder to satisfy the body’s oxygen demands.
Also, the blood circulation volume increases when you exercise, making your body more efficient; hence the lungs must work just as hard to maintain the body’s efficiency level.
It is not a secret that you have to breathe properly when performing aerobic activities, like running or swimming, or other types of exercise such as bodyweight training or strength training. Besides ensuring that your connective tissues and workout muscles get sufficient oxygen, here are other benefits you will accrue from following the right breathing pattern.
When you inhale during exercise, the chest expands, and as a result, it aids in keeping your back straight. This is crucial when exercising because a majority of the exercises we perform require that our back be in line.
Besides, the right workout posture provides safety and ensures that you work your target muscles properly.
When you follow the right breathing pattern during exercise, you take in oxygen that’s distributed throughout your body to provide your muscles the power to push on. The more power your muscles have, the more improvements you get in your overall body performance.
Also, breathing properly during exercise means there will be more oxygen for your body to use for other functions.
The body requires water and oxygen to convert body fat into energy. The more oxygen you take in – through proper breathing, the more your body gets rid of fat, toxins and stored water resulting in weight loss.
Breathing in properly fuels this process and therefore allows you to shed the fats faster and more efficiently.
Poor breathing slows down your metabolism since the body’s trying to cling onto the resources it already has, which in turn produces fat. With improved breathing, however, you can reverse this process.
There’s always the tendency for people, whether adults or children, to breathe through the mouth instead of the nose. Whether you’re going about your daily life, sleeping or exercising, it’s preferable to breathe through the nose than through the mouth.
Mouth breathing causes the brain to perceive that carbon dioxide is leaving the body too fast and as a result, it stimulates the production of mucus in an attempt to slow the breathing.
Breathing through the nose is more efficient that mouth breathing with regard to supplying oxygen to the body. When doing cardiovascular exercise, it is advisable to inhale and exhale through the nose to facilitate filtering and warming of the inhaled air.
Breathing through the nose is way healthier than mouth breathing for some reasons. The lungs take oxygen from the air, and most of the oxygen absorption occurs on exhalation. Exhaling through the nose causes higher air pressure and as a result, a slower exhalation which gives the lungs more time to extract large volumes of oxygen.
This is common in people whose nasal passages are restricted or blocked. For instance, a small nostril size can cause one to breathe primarily through the mouth. Mouth breathing is greatly discouraged because it is inefficient and can result in hyperventilation, which worsens the symptoms of asthma.
When you exercise, the lungs and blood circulatory system respond differently to satisfy the body’s demands for more energy. The most commonly felt response is a rapid heartbeat and a more powerful lung function to deliver sufficient oxygen to the body muscles.
Besides facilitating optimal oxygen intake, here are some other benefits of breathing properly during exercise:Improves performanceHelps in maintaining postureImproves the body’s fat burning capabilities
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