Want to boost your IQ

June 16, 2008 by  
Filed under Fitness & Sport

Exercise is the keystone for healthy living, but it is not often advocated to help you to boost your IQ. We already know that older people who exercise three or more times a week have a significantly reduced risk of developing Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia. Whatever your age, if you exercise regularly you have a 30 to 40 percent lower risk of dementia, and even as little as 15 minutes of exercise, three days a week, cuts your risk significantly. One short, brisk, walk every day can make a real difference, but what is new is that recent studies have shown that some forms of exercise may actually help you think better, while others have little or no impact on your brain matter. Here’s three suggestions for what works, and what doesn’t, for those ‘little grey cells’.

Aerobic Training:
In 2006, Arthur Kramer of the University of Illinois used MRIs to prove that aerobic exercise builds grey and white matter in the brains of older adults. Later studies found that more aerobically fit schoolkids also perform better on cognitive tests. Widely accepted now that aerobic exercise is one of the best things you can do to stay mentally agile into old age.
Impact on intelligence: STRONG

Weight Training:
It might make you feel good to have ripped muscles, but researchers have found only the most tenuous link between heavy resistance training and improved cognitive function.
Impact on intelligence: NEGLIBIBLE

You need as much oxygen as you can get, particularly for brain function, but under stress we tend to hold our breath and reduce our intake which can certainly affect our memory. Yoga can break that habit by helping you learn to breathe correctly which results in less stress and more oxygen.
Impact on intelligence: POSSIBLY STRONG