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How Exercise Could Lead to a Better Brain – NYTimes.com

How Exercise Could Lead to a Better Brain – NYTimes.com:

How exercise could lead to a better brain – ‘[A] scientifically proven way to make yourself smarter. Go for a walk or a swim…Why would exercise build brainpower in ways that thinking might not? The brain, like all muscles and organs, is a tissue, and its function declines with underuse and age. Beginning in our late 20s, most of us will lose about 1 percent annually of the volume of the hippocampus, a key portion of the brain related to memory and certain types of learning…Exercise though seems to slow or reverse the brain’s physical decay, much as it does with muscles.’
And it has now been shown that the brain can also generate new brain cells, contrary to popular thinking 10-20 years ago. But, it appears, these new brain cells need exercise to make them ‘nimble’ even if that exercise is simply walking and stretching. Good news all round!