A slimmer physique and an improved cardiovascular health care might be the trade-offs that comes to mind while thinking about doing more exercise. But do you know what happened to our brain when we do exercise? A lot of studies have reported that the exercise activities which are particularly related to the heart pumping, have remarkable effects on our brain, even enhance the brain structure. Some of the incredible effects of exercise on human brain are discussed here.
Exercise improves the learning and working memory
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that, hippocampus is an brain area that create new neurons in our whole life, and this area is closely related with brain learning and memory. Studies have found that adults who have a proper exercise routine performed better in learning, memory keeping and in decision making tasks as compared to the adults who do not exercise.
American Psychological Association (APA) reported that exercise is an important form of therapy for patients suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia, as boost to memory function is documented. Interestingly, hippocampus can be increase in size by 1% after a regular exercise of one year.
Exercise turn our brain into powerhouse of pleasure
According to APA, lot of chemicals including serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine, and endocannabinoids are stimulated due to exercise. Each of these chemicals have different roles in increasing the feelings of wellbeing, enhancing the interest in life and in managing the stress. If a person does not have these chemicals in sufficient amount, then their content can be improved by doing exercise. Greater Good Science Center said that exercise delivers the pleasure to brain at an extent that it is used to help the patients suffering from aftereffects of drug abuse. Furthermore, human being lose around 13% of the dopamine receptors in each decade which leads us to feel the less pleasure in our daily life, while exercise can reverse this situation.
Exercise helps in neuron formation
Harvard Health Publishing says, exercise helps in neurogenesis, the process of new neurons formation in brain. Approximately 100 billion neurons are present in human brain at the time of birth, which regenerate fast during our childhood and then become slow with maturity. It was assumed that neurogenesis may stopped completely but it is proven that neuron formation lasts a lifetime.
A researcher at Massachusetts General Hospital conducted an experiment on rats and evaluated the ignition of neurogenesis by medicine. He found that neurons were died before they have any potential. But, after putting the rats through course of exercises, it was observed that exercise not only sparked the neurogenesis but also made the neurons strong and healthy to last for long time.
Exercise improves the cerebral cortex thickness
The cerebral cortex is an outer covering of cerebrum which is the largest part of brain. Cerebral cortex is linked with emotions, reasoning, thought patterns and language. Johns Hopkins Medicine reported that exercise improved the thickness of cerebral cortex. This is because the exercise helps in split-second decisions. For example, if somebody is running then he manage his environment accordingly as to not twist angle with something. In addition, if somebody is at gym, then he is continuously monitoring the level of thirst and exhaustion. So, the mind is working as hard as the body is, which results in stronger and thicker cerebral cortex.
Exercise and neuroplasticity
Neuroplasticity is used to describe the brain adaptability to different environment. Scientific American says that human brain is malleable since birth, which means it is able to change either functionally and physically in response to injury, disease, different events like learning and new environments. As the best neuroplasticity is, the more better brain will be able to adjust the life event. According to PsyPost, even one workout session elevate the neuroplasticity. This might be because of neural growth encouragement due to exercise and its suppressant effects on GABA that restrict the neurotransmitters.
It is recommended that 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes intense exercise is compulsory for human beings. Please remember to consult with your doctor before you take any action.