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Exercise can increase cognitive function

Category: General Wellness

A new study conducted by Martin Juneau, M.D., of the Montreal Heart Institute, has revealed that exercise can help improve cognitive functions like quick thinking, recalling information and fast decision making.

The research, which was presented at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress, looked at overweight adults who lead a sedentary lifestyle. Their cognitive function, blood flow to the brain, cardiac output and ability to tolerate exercise was measured before they undertook a four-month exercise regimen, in which they did an exercise bike and circuit weight lifting routine twice a week. After the four months, their weight, body mass index and waist circumference decreased, while their ability to handle exercise went up. The results also showed that the more weight they lost, the more their cognitive function increased.

"If you talk to people who exercise, they say they feel sharper. Now we've found a way to measure that," said Juneau.

Juneau also reported that while people can take a pill to manage high blood pressure or reduce cholesterol, which can be detected with cholesterol testing, exercise has the ability to do both while also making people smarter.

Benefits of exercise
There are a slew of benefits that come with regularly exercising. The Mayo Clinic notes that exercise decreases the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases by helping maintain healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and it also may be effective in staving off diabetes, stroke, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer.

Regularly exercising may also be able to boost one's mood by stimulating chemicals in the brain that are associated with positive emotions. In addition, exercise can help a person feel more confident about their appearance and bolster self-esteem, the Mayo Clinic reports. Maintaining a workout schedule has the ability to increase one's energy levels by allowing the heart and lungs to work with greater efficiency.

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