Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Healthy Body/ Healthy Mind

It’s not news. And it should not be news. For those who need more confirming evidence, research has concluded, yet again, that exercise is not just good for your body: it’s great for your mind. Link here.

As the poet Juvenal famously declared: mens sana in corpore sano. A healthy mind in a healthy body.

If you want to forestall what they call cognitive decline, you need to be more active. Doing more exercise will add years to your mental age.

I assume that it has something to do with blood flow to your little gray cells... but whatever the reason, we now know that regular exercise will improve your mood, forestall all manner of serious illnesses, and enhance your cognitive functioning. And that's before we even consider how much it will reduce the nation's health care bill.

As has long been the case, there is no rational reason not to be making exercise part of your daily routine.

I would only add one point: blood flow to the brain is great for your cognitive capacity, but if you want your mind to continue to functoin optimally for as long as possible, you need to put it to good use. Exercise may lay the necessary groundwork, but it is not, in itself, sufficient.

That means intellectual activity, whether it involves work, puzzles, games, reading, writing... or all of the above.


Anonymous said...

i've banged my head against the wall with these "nerds." they won't listen. they think working out is "knucklehead" stuff. they are surprised when muscular men know stuff. likewise, a lot of musclemen don't study thinking that they shouldn't or can't because they are muscular. my what a society!

Stuart Schneiderman said...

I agree with you. One reason I posted about this is that nerds seem to think that if they work out they are going to get stupid... if only they were smart enough to figure it out.