All of us know to exercise our bodies to keep fit, but how often do you consider exercising your brain? And which sort of exercise does it need anyway? What are the facts? What is the key to mental agility?
Keeping mentally active will keep your mind in good shape. Getting older doesn’t mean you need 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 disorder. The brain, like the rest of the body, needs to be kept active to keep healthy.
Now it has been revealed that exercising your brain can keep it in shape also.
The research discovered that how you spend your leisure time may affect the health of your brain.
Passive activities, including watching TV, participating in social activities, and listening to music.
Intellectual activities are reading, painting, playing a musical instrument, woodworking.
Physical activities, as an instance, gardening, playing game, exercising in the gym, walking, jogging.
The only’action’ the Alzheimer’s patients had performed more often 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 correlated with a substantial decline in the probability of getting Alzheimer’s disease later in life.”
An intellectual or physical hobby stimulates the mind and may decrease neurodegeneration as seen in diseases such as Alzheimer’s. So sitting watching the TV isn’t enough for your mind, you will need to keep it active.
Lots 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 courses until he died at the age of 109. The director of his residential home said”Fred was a remarkable chap. He kept his memory, going back to the death of Queen Victoria, and always kept 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 get started. Local night courses offer a range of options. Take a look on the web too.
Remember you can have a healthy mind and enjoy a hobby also. Do not leave it until tomorrow, begin today!