-Dr.Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC
Getting plenty of exercise and eating right for the sake of good health is basically common knowledge these days. While there are hundreds of reports regarding exercise and its positive benefits on the heart, there is now exciting new research that shows exercise and diet not only keep the heart healthy, but also slow down the aging of your brain.
The study found that people whose hearts pumped less blood had smaller brains, a symptom of aging, even when people did not have heart disease. The study was done on 1, 504 individuals from ages 34 to 84. It found that 30 percent had a low cardiac index and also had a smaller brain volume than average. With less blood flowing to the brain it causes one to age faster. Those that had a lower cardiac index were on average considered to have a brain that was two years older than those with a healthier cardiac index.
These findings also pertain to middle- aged people, even though they still had normal blood flow, if they had a lower cardio index they were still considered two years older in terms of their brain than that of healthier people with a higher cardio index.
Researchers are now trying to find a link between cardio output and risk for dementia, as brain shrinkage causes cognitive impairment. Hopefully this article will give you more motivation to stay healthy not just for your body, but for your brain as well.