Best Exercise to Keep Your Brain Sharp

We are all looking for ways to improve our health and when it comes to our brain, that is no different, nor should it be. As we get older there are several changes that begin to occur within our brains and it begins to shrink in size. We begin to lose cognitive function and our memory can become impaired with time. We also begin to become more at risk for dementia, white matter lesions, and stroke.

We can’t really slow down time or keep ourselves from aging, but we can do our best to keep our brains healthy and lower the impact, or even prevent, some of these conditions.

In this post, you’ll learn:

  • Why HIIT is the best exercise to keep your brain sharp!
  • The impact it can have on your risk for neurodegenerative disorders
  • How HIIT can promote your mental health
  • The correlation between sleep, exercise, and your brain
  • When you should start protecting your brain function
  • How you can incorporate a HIIT workout into your routine

Just like we work hard to keep our bodies healthy through nutrition, supplementation, and exercise, we need to do the same with our brain. After all, our brain is the most important organ in our body. 

Similarly to how we exercise to keep our bodies strong, exercise can also keep our brains strong. You may not grow a muscle on it but exercise can help to protect your brain against cognitive decline, improve memory, and lift your mood.

But not all exercise is created equal. Recent studies show the best type of exercises for your brain are the ones that raise your heart rate [1, 2]. The key is consistency. It is something you need to incorporate into your life. You can’t just do it once and expect to see immediate results, but rather it is a lifestyle change where you commit to an overall healthier you.

HOW HIIT CAN HELP BRAIN FUNCTION

Over the past few years, HIIT (high-intensity interval training) has become very popular and it continues to grow in popularity due to the results it gives in such a short amount of time.

This type of training can help to improve your brain by increasing Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) levels within the brain, which supports brain health. A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology shows that exercise helps to activate BDNF in the brain and high-intensity exercise proved to be the most beneficial. [3]. BDNF is a protein that is found in the parts of the brain that are vital to learning, memory (especially long-term memory), and higher thinking.

DECREASES RISK FOR NEURODEGENERATIVE DISORDERS

HIIT has been proven to lower the risk of dementia, Alzheimer’s, and stroke [4]. Chances are you have known someone who has been affected by one of these and you know they can be frightening disorders and so you know you want to do everything you can to keep your brain sharp and healthy.

For some, these neurodegenerative disorders are among our biggest fears, but regular exercise, especially using HIIT can help protect our brains and research shows that regular HIIT exercise can even improve the life of someone already suffering from neurodegenerative disorders. A 2015 study published in PLoS One found that dementia patients that performed high-intensity functional exercise developed better balance and muscle strength, as well as reduced apathy [5].

PROMOTES MENTAL HEALTH

Studies also show that exercise can help with more than just cognitive function, it can also be extremely beneficial for those suffering from mental health issues, such as depression. It has been well noted and is widely accepted that routine exercise can help alleviate many of the symptoms in patients who are clinically depressed [6]. It can help those with depression feel less stressed by reducing the body’s natural stress hormones [7].

WHY YOU NEED TO GET MORE SLEEP AND HOW EXERCISE HELPS

Routine exercise, such as with HIIT, can also improve brain health by helping to promote a better night’s sleep. A study published in Mental Health and Physical Activity showed that when people exercised for 150 minutes or more a week, they saw a 65% increase in sleep quality [8].

Getting better sleep can help in numerous ways, whether you are trying to control stress, lose weight, or improve your brain health. When we sleep we clear waste from the brain and re-energizes cells. Plus it supports learning and memory, while also improving mood, appetite, and libido.

WHEN SHOULD I START WORRYING ABOUT BRAIN HEALTH

It is never too early the start worrying about the health of your brain and how it is going to change throughout your life. In fact, the better you start to pay attention to it, the better. We all want better memory and better focus, and we all want to stay sharp as we get older, but like your body, you can’t wait until you are sick to start taking care of yourself.

Start taking care of your body and your brain today, and not just for sharper functions, but for the long-term health of your brain. Whether you are 20, 40, or 60 years old, now is the time to make sure you keep your brain as healthy as possible.

No matter what your age you should be staying active and consuming a nutritious diet. While exercise helps to keep the brain healthy and sharp, nutrition also plays a major role. Eating a diet full of whole foods and supplementing with the right supplements will help to support a healthier brain.

Taking a supplement like Thrive can also help promote brain function, improve memory, and guard against neurodegenerative illnesses. This supplement has 8 all natural herbs in it, each one contributing differently to the health of your brain.

HOW TO START A SOLID WORKOUT ROUTINE

This is a great exercise that you can add into your routine to start protecting your brain health.

These are the same types of workouts you get in HIIT MAX™ or when you subscribe to a workout platform like Elite. By purchasing a program or getting into a membership platform, you know just what to do when you get to the gym. Plus, you have the option of working out at home with structured workouts that will not only increase your brain health but your overall health.

These programs will ensure that you are doing the right exercises and doing them correctly, so you can get all of the benefits. Both HIIT MAX™ and Elite will help you improve your memory, feel better mentally, and keep you focused and sharp. And it will help you stay healthy and avoid illness as you get older, such as dementia and stroke.

Aside from exercise, be sure you are maintaining a nutritional diet made from whole foods and providing your body with all natural supplementation, especially a brain supplement, like Thrive, that helps to support cognitive.

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