This is how we keep our brain fit for life

Study shows brain health linked to physical fitness in older adult

Staying active with aging is good for brain health and memory. Researchers recently highlighted the brain connection and physical fitness in a study published in Science Direct.

MRI shows link between physical fitness and memory

Researchers used fMRI to test the link between physical fitness and memory and brain health. What they found is that aging does cause some memory decline, but physically fit older adults' brain activity is more youthful.

Physically fit older adults had better memory compared to those lacking aerobic fitness capacity.

The study authors write:
"Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) is one individual difference factor that may attenuate brain aging, and thereby contribute to enhance source memory in older adults.'
The study

Researchers tested 26 older and 31 younger adults who performed treadmill tests with measurments of peak VO2 - an indicator of cardiorespiratory fitness.

Then they tested memory using face-imaging while the study participants underwent fMRI to map activity in the brain.

When they compared physically fit older adults to younger subjects they found key areas of the brain became activated; similar to the younger group.

See: How twenty minutes of exercise can keep us physically fit

The takeaway from the study is simple: Staying physically fit keeps the brain fit as we age.

Journal Reference:
Science Direct