Fit­ness Minds

Australian Natural Bodz - - Contents -

Ex­er­cise to keep the brain in good shape. Haters only ex­ist if you let them!

White mat­ter tracts en­able com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween ar­eas of the brain, but like the rest of the body, they decline with age. How­ever, re­search sug­gests that stay­ing ac­tive may help to pre­serve the in­tegrity of th­ese tracts. Ag­nieszka Burzyn­ska, a post­doc­toral re­searcher at the Uni­ver­sity of Illi­nois, and col­leagues used ac­celerom­e­ters to track phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity in 88 healthy but “low-fit” par­tic­i­pants aged 60 to 78. Re­sults showed that older adults who en­gaged more of­ten in light phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity had greater struc­tural in­tegrity in the white-mat­ter tracts of the tem­po­ral lobes, which play a key role in mem­ory, lan­guage, and the pro­cess­ing of vis­ual and au­di­tory in­for­ma­tion. Con­versely, those who spent more time sit­ting had lower struc­tural in­tegrity in the white-mat­ter tracts con­nect­ing the hip­pocam­pus. “This re­la­tion­ship be­tween the in­tegrity of tracts con­nect­ing the hip­pocam­pus and seden­tari­ness is sig­nif­i­cant even when we con­trol for age, gen­der and aer­o­bic fit­ness,” said Burzyn­ska. “It sug­gests that the phys­i­o­log­i­cal ef­fect of sit­ting too much, even if you still ex­er­cise at the end of the day for half an hour, will have a detri­men­tal ef­fect on your brain.”

Ref­er­ence: Burzyn­ska AZ, Chad­dock-Hey­man L, Voss MW, et al. Phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity and car­diores­pi­ra­tory fit­ness are ben­e­fi­cial for white mat­ter in low-fit older adults. PLoS One. 2014 Sep 17;9(9):e107413.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.