(CARLSBAD, CA) – Bicep curls to strengthen your arms, stomach crunches to tighten your abs, cardiovascular drills to improve your endurance, and crossword puzzles to power-up your brain.
Yep, you read that correctly. It’s actually possible to exercise your brain. In fact, the latest research indicates that your risk for dementia, and perhaps even Alzheimer’s, can be minimized with focused efforts to engage your brain.
Whether you plan to face-off against your extended family in a game of Trivial Pursuit, or you just want to remember where you left your car keys, it may be time to strength-train your brain. Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett suggests these methods for pumping some neurons.
Start Moving - Research from the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California, documents that exercise increases blood flow to the hippocampus, the part of your brain responsible for memory and mental processing. The study participants who experienced these positive effects exercised for an hour at least four times per week.
Cut the Fat – As if you didn’t need another reason to trim your waistline, recent research from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine determines that excess body fat in women is connected to memory loss. Seek to decrease your body fat, through exercise and a healthy diet.
Get Your ZZZzzz’s – Ever suffer from sleep deprivation? If you have, then you know how it impairs your mental capacity the next day. There’s an actual physiological reason for that. When you sleep, a molecule called ATP enters your brain and increases its function. Without sleep, your body is less able to convert the energy from nutrients into brainpower. For maximum brain capacity, get 7-9 hours of shuteye every night.
Break up the Monotony – Most of us are creatures of habit, doing the same tasks in the same manner day after day. However, changing up your routine can actually give your brain a boost. Browse through the grocery store aisles in a different order. Drive a different route to work. Stand in a new spot in Jazzercise class. Whenever you mix-up your routine, your brain gets a workout.
Just Breathe – Take some time each day to slow down your breathing. Breathe through your nose, use your diaphragm, and inhale deeply into your lungs. When more oxygen gets to your brain, you’ll be able to think more clearly.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,800 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.