Better Memory Through Movement.

By: Ayulent Healthcare

Regular exercise reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s in healthy older adults. Regular exercise is known to improve and maintain key aspects of cognitive function like attention, learning, and memory. Alzheimer’s is described as a syndrome of separation from the brain. A structure in the brain, the hippocampus, is considered the seat of learning and memory. It is located in the medial temporal lobe (MTL) and is a networked node of brain activity that reacts sensitively to the effects of movement. This study of healthy older adults aimed to evaluate the effects of exercise on nerve connections in the medial temporal lobe. 17 out of 34 participants were included in a group exercise program after completing the initial health, fitness, and cognitive assessment. The study took place during the COVID-19 pandemic when participation in the group exercise was safe. This study tested the effect of a 20-week training intervention compared to training on flexibility and nerve connections in the MTL. Participants underwent cardiac monitoring between moderate-intensity workouts. 

They also conducted learning and memory tests on participants and collected information on fitness, body mass index (BMI), and health. This is what the study showed. Exercise-related improvements in body mass index (BMI), physical health, and aerobic fitness after 20 weeks of moderate exercise intervention. The researchers found that those who exercised showed a greater ability to rearrange and reshape nerve connections in their brains. This allowed them to retain information and apply it to new situations. 

Independent measures of learning and memory also improved. Generalization is based on our ability to associate, integrate, recombine, and retrieve the knowledge to improve it. Participants in the exercise program showed improvements in their ability to apply and recombine information from past learning For example, when participants learned through a series of exercises that images of fish babies resembled fish babies that looked like zebras, they derived from the images that mating babies with oranges meant that oranges were associated with zebras. This study complements our scientific findings by describing how movement influences the structure of important brain networks in the MTL and enables improvements in cognitive function. The neural, structural, cognitive, and functional improvements described here were observed in the training group, but not in the control group. The study suggests that the flexibility of the MTL network can be used as a biomarker to detect early neurodegenerative diseases and evaluate cognitive function with specific interventions. The frontiers of neuroscience offer insights into the mechanisms and effectiveness of various

Your Cart

Cart is empty.