Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Do we all have a “brain age”?

Do we all have a “brain age”? Are all brain exer­cises equal? Does aging mean decline?

Answer­ing these ques­tions prob­a­bly requires to debunk a few myths about the brain.

Under­stand­ing how our brain func­tions can help under­stand how it is pos­si­ble for our brain to change, and what we can do to make these changes hap­pen. This is why know­ing how our brain works is the first habit to acquire on the road to boost­ing brain functions.

Wouldn’t it be very hard for a musi­cian to get bet­ter at play­ing the clar­inet if he didn’t know that it is the air that his mouth pulses into the instru­ment that cre­ates its sounds? In the same way lim­ited knowl­edge about the brain may be one of the rea­sons why many peo­ple do not take action to try to opti­mize the way their brain work.

Here are 10 Brain and Brain Fit­ness Myths, debunked for you: Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Expo Day; Top 15 Articles of 2009

In this Jan­u­ary issue of our eNewslet­ter, we will first neuronsbrief you on the enlight­en­ing demos that will take place on Wednes­day, Jan­u­ary 20th, as part of the Sharp­Brains Sum­mit, and then present the 15 most stim­u­lat­ing Sharp­Brains arti­cles of 2009.

Expo Day

If you want to see and dis­cuss the lat­est pro­grams and tech­nolo­gies for brain fit­ness, pre­sented by Sum­mit Spon­sors, Wednes­day Jan­u­ary 20th is your day. Each demo will last 30 min­utes, fol­lowed by 15 min­utes of Q&A.

9am. Baycrest/ Cog­nic­iti will intro­duce the new Memory@Work work­shop, designed to teach what mem­ory is, how lifestyle fac­tors such as dis­trac­tion and stress can affect mem­ory, and how to enhance mem­ory per­for­mance at work with the use of enabling strategies.

10am. Cog­niFit will demo Cog­niFit Per­sonal Coach and Cog­niFit Senior Dri­ver, two online pro­grams designed to assess and main cog­ni­tive func­tions for healthy liv­ing and safe dri­ving, respectively.

11am. Posit Sci­ence will demo InSight, a software-based cog­ni­tive train­ing pack­age designed to sharpen brain’s visual sys­tem. This is the pro­gram being tested by All­state for safer driving.

Noon. Happy Neu­ron will intro­duce HAP­PYneu­ron PRO, a new plat­form for pro­fes­sion­als for the effec­tive deliv­ery and man­age­ment of cog­ni­tive reme­di­a­tion and reha­bil­i­ta­tion pro­grams in a patient cen­tric manner.

1pm. Sharp­Brains will help nav­i­gate this grow­ing field by dis­cussing The State of the Brain Fit­ness Soft­ware 2009 report and The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness con­sumer guide, and sum­ma­riz­ing key Sum­mit take-aways.

Learn more and reg­is­ter HERE. Please remem­ber that reg­is­tra­tion closes on Jan­u­ary 17th.

We want to thank our most recent spon­sor, the Arrow­smith Pro­gram, a com­pre­hen­sive suite of cog­ni­tive pro­grams for stu­dents with learn­ing dis­abil­i­ties avail­able in pub­lic and pri­vate schools in Canada and the U.S. More infor­ma­tion here.

And now, let’s review the (in our view) 15 most stim­u­lat­ing arti­cles of 2009.

The Big Picture

100 is the new 65: Why do some peo­ple live, and well, to 100? Researchers are try­ing to find out, reports Meera Lee Sethi at Greater Good Magazine.

Learn­ing about Learn­ing: an Inter­view with Joshua Wait­zkin: Scott Barry Kauf­man inter­views “child prodigy” Joshua Wait­zkin on The Art of Learning.

Debunk­ing 10 Brain Health Myths: Does your brain have a “Brain Age”? Is a Magic Pill to pre­vent mem­ory prob­lems right around the corner?  Check out the facts to debunk 10 com­mon myths.

Why is work­ing mem­ory rel­e­vant to read­ing and math­e­mat­ics: A recent large UK study iden­ti­fied 1 in 10 stu­dents as hav­ing work­ing mem­ory dif­fi­cul­ties. Dr. Tracy Alloway elab­o­rates why this matters.

Change Your Envi­ron­ment, Change Your­self: Dr. Brett Steen­barger explains why new envi­ron­ments  force us to exit our rou­tines and actively mas­ter unfa­mil­iar challenges.”

Tools

Retool­ing Use it or lose it: Alvaro Fer­nan­dez dis­cusses why rou­tine, doing things inside our com­fort zones, is the most com­mon enemy of the nov­elty, vari­ety and chal­lenge our brains need.

Does cog­ni­tive train­ing work? (For Whom? For What?): Dr. Pas­cale Mich­e­lon, dis­sects a cou­ple of recent press releases and the under­ly­ing stud­ies to clar­i­fy­ing what they mean – and what they don’t mean.

New Study Sup­ports Neu­ro­feed­back Treat­ment for ADHD: Dr. David Rabiner reports the promis­ing find­ings from the first well-designed con­trolled trial on the effect of neu­ro­feed­back treat­ment for ADHD.

Do Art Classes Boost Test Scores? Is there a “Mozart Effect?”: Some researchers sug­gest so; oth­ers are not con­vinced. Karin Evans offers a  thought­ful review of the evi­dence and asks, “Now, is this the right question?”

Does cof­fee boost cog­ni­tive func­tions over time? Dr. Pas­cale Mich­e­lon reports good news (long-term effects seem more pos­i­tive than neg­a­tive, so cof­fee leads to no clear harm) and bad ones (no clear ben­e­fi­cial effects on gen­eral brain functions).

Indus­try

Brain fit­ness heads towards its tip­ping point: How do you know when some­thing is mov­ing towards a Glad­wellian tip­ping point? When insur­ance com­pa­nies and pol­icy mak­ers pay atten­tion, Dr. Ger­ard Finnemore reports.

Visual Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the State of the Mar­ket 2009: Paul Van Slem­brouck beau­ti­fully presents the main find­ings of our 150-page mar­ket report, The State of the Brain Fit­ness Mar­ket 2009.

Michael Merzenich on brain fit­ness: neu­ro­sci­en­tist Michael Merzenich dis­cusses neu­ro­plas­tic­ity, tech­nol­ogy, safe dri­ving, men­tal health, and the need for stan­dards, auto­mated assess­ments and “per­sonal brain trainers”.

Brain Teaser

Stim­u­late your Con­cen­tra­tion Skills: when one really wants to mem­o­rize a fact, it is cru­cial to pay atten­tion. Dr. Pas­cale Mich­e­lon chal­lenges you to count a few sim­ple letters.

Res­o­lu­tion

Finally, an arti­cle that may inspire some New Year Res­o­lu­tions. In Yes, You Can Build Willpower, Daniel Gole­man dis­cusses how the brain makes about 10,000 new cells every day, how they migrate to where they are needed, and how each cell can make around 10,000 con­nec­tions to other brain cells. Impli­ca­tion? Med­i­tate, mind­fully, and build pos­i­tive habits.

Wish­ing you a Happy and Pro­duc­tive 2010, and look­ing for­ward to meet­ing many of you (200 so far) at the inau­gural Sharp­Brains Sum­mit!

Brain Training Market Talk, at MIT/ BoomerTech Series

We’ll have an excit­ing ses­sion in Palo Alto on Octo­ber 6th, as part of the BoomerTech series orga­nized by the MIT Club and Smart­Sil­vers. Let me share the details now.

Fact or Fad: Who is Shap­ing the Brain Fit­ness Mar­ket?
Descrip­tion: Lots of buzz … Per­haps you think that “Senior Moments” are an inevitable part of aging. MIT Club Northern CaliforniaBut research shows you may be able to keep your brain young and fit the same way you do your body, with exer­cise and train­ing. With the suc­cess of Nintendo’s Brain Age, Posit Sci­ence and dozens of new soft­ware pro­grams and games that promise “brain fit­ness”, the real ques­tion is: “Are we expe­ri­enc­ing a fad, or an emerg­ing new con­sumer market?”

Join our speaker, Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, author of the new book, The Sharp Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness, and our expert panel to discuss:

* What are the top prod­ucts on the mar­ket today?
* Can the emerg­ing field of Brain fit­ness improve your job per­for­mance?
* How will con­sumers make informed deci­sions on what to buy and use?
* What are the emerg­ing trends to lever­age for entre­pre­neurs to jump into the marketplace?

Click Here to Register

Speaker, Pan­elist & Moderator

Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, Sharp­Brains — Alvaro is co-founder and CEO of Sharp­Brains, a lead­ing mar­ket research firm that tracks the mar­ket and research for cog­ni­tive assess­ments, train­ing, and games. A mem­ber of the World Eco­nomic Forum’s Global Agenda Coun­cils, he has been quoted in The New York Times, The Wall Street Jour­nal, USA Today, and more, and recently co-authored the book, The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness: 18 Inter­views with Sci­en­tists, Prac­ti­cal Advice, and Prod­uct Reviews, to Keep Your Brain Sharp. Alvaro received mas­ters’ degrees in edu­ca­tion and busi­ness from Stan­ford Uni­ver­sity, and teaches at UC-Berkeley Osher Life­long Learn­ing Institute.

Pan­elists

Roger Quy, Gen­eral Part­ner, Tech­nol­ogy Part­ners — Roger has been respon­si­ble for the life sci­ence prac­tice of Tech­nol­ogy Part­ners since 1989. He spe­cial­izes in neu­rotech­nol­ogy, invest­ing in both bio­pharma and med­ical device com­pa­nies. Roger began his career at the Queen Square Insti­tute of Neu­rol­ogy, Lon­don where he was a Research Fel­low for the British Med­ical Research Coun­cil. He devel­oped and com­mer­cial­ized tech­niques for mon­i­tor­ing the brains of ambu­la­tory patients. He con­tributed to a text­book on epilepsy and holds eight patents. Roger earned a BA with hon­ors in psy­chol­ogy and law and a PhD in neu­ro­science from the Uni­ver­sity of Keele, Eng­land. He received an MBA from the Haas School of Busi­ness at the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, Berkeley.

Jan Zivic, Founder, Vibrant Brains — Jan’s inter­est in Brain Fit­ness is very per­sonal. She suf­fered a trau­matic brain injury after an auto­mo­bile acci­dent sev­eral years ago, and expe­ri­enced the con­cept of neu­ro­plas­tic­ity first-hand as she reha­bil­i­tated from not being able to walk or think ratio­nally to restor­ing much of her pre­vi­ous function.

Jan has served in a vari­ety of lead­er­ship roles includ­ing: the Board of Direc­tors of the Yerba Buena Cen­ter for the Arts where she cur­rently serves as Pres­i­dent of the Board, the Library Com­mis­sion of SF, the Cal­i­for­nia Exec­u­tive Recruiters Asso­ci­a­tion (its first female Pres­i­dent), the Kather­ine Del­mar Burke Inde­pen­dent School, and The Fam­ily Ser­vices Agency of SF — Pres­i­dent of the Board. Jan was rec­og­nized as The SF Cable Car Awards “Woman of the Year,” and later as the recip­i­ent of the Maya Angelou Com­mu­nity Lead­er­ship Award, from the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, San Fran­cisco Med­ical School’s Cen­ter Of Excellence.

Date: Tues­day, Octo­ber 6, 2009

Time:

* 6:00PM Reg­is­tra­tion, Hors d’oeuvres and Net­work­ing
* 7:00PM Pre­sen­ta­tion and Panel Discussion

Cost:

* $20.00 in advance on the web­site
* $25.00 Walk-ins at the door (cash or check please, no credit cards accepted at door)

Con­tact:

Michael Sar­fatti
tel 415–885-2293
sarfatti@alum.mit.edu

Loca­tion:

Wil­son Son­sini
950 Page Mill Road
Palo Alto, CA 94301

Click Here to Register

Brain Quiz: Do You Have a Brain?

Have you already read The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness?

Let’s see…brain health and brain fitness

1. Pick the only part of your body that does not con­tain fat:

a. Arm
b. Thigh
c. Brain
d. None

Answer: d) Fats are also present in the brain: in neu­rons’ mem­branes to keep them flex­i­ble. These fats are the omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids mol­e­cules. (Page 32 of the book)

2. Pick the only food prod­uct that doesn’t con­tain Omega-3 fatty acids

a. Tuna
b. Wal­nut
c. Kiwi
d. Jelly Beans

Answer: d) Fatty acids can be found in cold-water fish (such as mack­erel, her­ring, salmon, and tuna), kiwi, and wal­nuts. (Page 33)

3. Pick the only food prod­uct that doesn’t con­tain antioxidants

a. Olive oil
b. Milk
c. Nuts
d. Berries

Answer: b) Antiox­i­dants can be found in veg­etable oils, nuts, green leafy veg­eta­bles (e.g., spinach), cit­rus fruit, and berries. (Page 33)

4. Chronic Stress cannot:

a. Pre­vent you from being cre­ative
b. Kill brain cells
c. Pre­vent you from sleep­ing
d. Kill liver cells

Answer: d) Pro­longed expo­sure to adrenal steroid hor­mones like cor­ti­sol, which is released into the blood stream when we are stressed, can lead to cell death and block the for­ma­tion of new neu­rons. (Page 35)

5. What type of phys­i­cal exer­cise is the best for your brain health?

a. Weight lift­ing
b. Aer­o­bic exer­cises
c. Flex­i­bil­ity exer­cises Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Preparing Society for the Cognitive Age, and Industry Webinar

Here you have the August edi­tion of our monthly newslet­ter cov­er­ing cog­ni­tive health and Brain Fitnessbrain fit­ness top­ics. Please remem­ber that you can sub­scribe to receive this Newslet­ter by email, using the box at the top of this page.

Sci­en­tific pub­li­ca­tion Fron­tiers in Neu­ro­science recently pub­lished a spe­cial issue on Aug­ment­ing Cog­ni­tion, and invited me to con­tribute with an arti­cle titled Prepar­ing Soci­ety for the Cog­ni­tive Age. Ground­break­ing brain research has occurred over the last 20 years. The oppor­tu­nity to improve brain health and per­for­mance is immense, but we need to ensure the mar­ket­place matures in a ratio­nal and sus­tain­able man­ner, both through health­care and non-healthcare chan­nels. Click Here to read my article.

Announce­ments

In May 2009 Sharp­Brains pub­lished The State of the Brain Fit­ness Soft­ware Mar­ket 2009, the main indus­try report for lead­ing orga­ni­za­tions prepar­ing their mem­bers, their clients, and their patients for the cog­ni­tive age. 150-pages long, the report includes a mar­ket sur­vey with 2,000+ respon­dents, detailed analy­sis of 20+ ven­dors, research briefs writ­ten by 12 lead­ing sci­en­tists and data and trends for 4 major cus­tomer segments.webinar

Below we share the full Exec­u­tive Sum­mary of the report and announce an exclu­sive webi­nar on Sep­tem­ber 29th to dis­cuss the State of the Mar­ket in more depth with buy­ers of the report.

To order the report and access both the report and the webi­nar, you can click Here. (Only $975 –a 25% dis­count– using Dis­count Code Frontiers2009 before Sep­tem­ber 28th).

State of the Mar­ket

The brain fit­ness field holds excit­ing promise for the future while pre­sent­ing clear oppor­tu­ni­ties and chal­lenges today. The good news is that there are more tools avail­able than ever before to assess and train a vari­ety of cog­ni­tive skills. The bad news is that there are no magic pills and that con­sumers, while sat­is­fied over­all, seem con­fused by com­pet­ing claims on how to reduce one’s “brain age.” We do see signs that this early-stage mar­ket can mature in a more ratio­nal, struc­tured man­ner; but there is much work to be done. We esti­mate that the size of the U.S. brain fit­ness soft­ware (i.e., appli­ca­tions designed to assess or enhance cog­ni­tive abil­i­ties) mar­ket in 2008 was Read the rest of this entry »

Preparing Society for the Cognitive Age (Frontiers in Neuroscience article!)

(Editor’s note: this arti­cle belongs to the excel­lent May 2009 spe­cial issue on Aug­ment­ing Frontiers in Neuroscience Augmenting CognitionCog­ni­tion of sci­en­tific jour­nal Fron­tiers in Neu­ro­science, Vol­ume 3, Issue 1. You can order this issue, for 50 euros, here. Highly rec­om­mended for sci­en­tists and tech­ni­cal read­ers inter­ested in the sci­ence. This arti­cle, an indus­try overview, is repro­duced here with autho­riza­tion by the Fron­tiers Research Foun­da­tion).

Prepar­ing Soci­ety for the Cog­ni­tive Age

- By Alvaro Fernandez

Ground­break­ing cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science research has occurred over the last 20 years — with­out par­al­lel growth of con­sumer aware­ness and appro­pri­ate pro­fes­sional dis­sem­i­na­tion. “Cog­ni­tion” remains an elu­sive con­cept with unclear impli­ca­tions out­side the research community.

Ear­lier this year, I pre­sented a talk to health care pro­fes­sion­als at the New York Acad­emy of Med­i­cine, titled “Brain Fit­ness Soft­ware: Help­ing Con­sumers Sep­a­rate Hope from Hype”. I explained what com­put­er­ized cog­ni­tive assess­ment and train­ing tools can do (assess/enhance spe­cific cog­ni­tive func­tions), what they can­not do (reduce one’s “brain age”) and the cur­rent uncer­tain­ties about what they can do (i.e., delay Alzheimer’s symp­toms). At the same sym­po­sium, Dr. Gary Kennedy, Direc­tor of Geri­atric Psy­chi­a­try at Mon­te­fiore Med­ical Cen­ter, pro­vided guid­ance on why and how to screen for exec­u­tive func­tion deficits in the con­text of dementia.

I could per­ceive two emerg­ing trends at the event: 1) “Aug­ment­ing Cog­ni­tion” research is most com­monly framed as a health­care, often phar­ma­co­log­i­cal topic, with the tra­di­tional cog­ni­tive bias in med­i­cine of focus­ing on detec­tion and treat­ment of dis­ease, 2) In addi­tion, there is a grow­ing inter­est in non-invasive enhance­ment options and over­all lifestyle issues. Research find­ings in Aug­ment­ing Cog­ni­tion are only just begin­ning to reach the main­stream mar­ket­place, mostly through health­care chan­nels. The oppor­tu­nity is immense, but we will need to ensure the mar­ket­place matures in a ratio­nal and sus­tain­able man­ner, both through health­care and non-healthcare channels.

In Jan­u­ary 2009, we polled the 21,000 sub­scribers of Sharp­Brains’ mar­ket research eNewslet­ter to iden­tify atti­tudes and behav­iors towards the “brain fit­ness” field (a term we chose in 2006 based on a num­ber of con­sumer sur­veys and focus groups to con­nect with a wider audi­ence). Over 2,000 decision-makers and early adopters responded to the survey.

One of the key ques­tions we asked was, “What is the most impor­tant prob­lem you see in the brain fit­ness field and how do you think it can be solved?”. Some exam­ples of the sur­vey free text answers are quoted here, together with my suggestions.

Most impor­tant prob­lems in the brain fit­ness field

Pub­lic aware­ness (39%): “To get peo­ple to under­stand that hered­ity alone does not decide brain func­tion­ing”. We need to ramp up efforts to build pub­lic aware­ness and enthu­si­asm about brain research, includ­ing estab­lish­ing clear links to daily liv­ing. We can col­lab­o­rate with ini­tia­tives such as the Dana Foundation’s Brain Aware­ness Week and use the recent “Neu­ro­science Core Con­cepts” mate­ri­als devel­oped by the Soci­ety for Neu­ro­science to give talks at schools, libraries and workplaces.

Claims (21%): “The lack of stan­dards and clear def­i­n­i­tions is very con­fus­ing, and Read the rest of this entry »

Debunking 10 Brain Training/ Cognitive Health Myths

Think about this: How can any­one take care of his or her brain when every week brings a new bar­rage of arti­cles and stud­ies which seem to con­tra­dict each other?

Do sup­ple­ments improve mem­ory? Do you need both phys­i­cal and men­tal exer­cise or is one of them enough? Which brain train­ing approach, if any, is worth one’s time and money?

We tried to address these ques­tions, and many oth­ers, in our recent book, The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­nessSharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness. The Book (182 pages, $24.95), that we pre­sented at Games for Health Con­fer­ence last week. The book is the result of over two years of exten­sive research includ­ing more than a hun­dred inter­views with sci­en­tists, pro­fes­sion­als and con­sumers, and a deep review of the sci­en­tific lit­er­a­ture, led by neu­ropsy­chol­o­gist Elkhonon Gold­berg and myself with the help of cog­ni­tive sci­en­tist Pas­cale Mich­e­lon. As we wrote in the Intro­duc­tion, what we wanted to do first of all was to debunks these 10 myths on brain health and brain training:

Myth 1. Genes deter­mine the fate of our brains.
Facts: Life­long neu­ro­plas­tic­ity allows our lifestyles and actions to play a mean­ing­ful role in how our brains phys­i­cally evolve, espe­cially given longer life expectancy.

Myth 2. Aging means auto­matic decline.
Facts: There is noth­ing inher­ently fixed in the pre­cise tra­jec­tory of how brain func­tions evolve as we age.

Myth 3. Med­ica­tion is the main hope for cog­ni­tive enhance­ment.
Facts: Non-invasive inter­ven­tions can have com­pa­ra­ble and more durable effects, side effect-free.

Myth 4. We will soon have a Magic Pill or Gen­eral Solu­tion to solve all our cog­ni­tive chal­lenges.
Facts: A multi-pronged approach is rec­om­mended, cen­tered around nutri­tion, stress man­age­ment, and both phys­i­cal and men­tal exercise.

Myth 5. There is only one “Use It or Lose it”.
Facts: The brain is com­posed of a num­ber of spe­cial­ized units. Our life and pro­duc­tiv­ity depend on a vari­ety of brain func­tions, not just one.

Myth 6. All brain activ­i­ties or exer­cises are equal.
Facts: Var­ied and tar­geted exer­cises are the nec­es­sary ingre­di­ents in brain train­ing so that a wide range of brain func­tions can be stimulated.

Myth 7. There is only one way to train your brain.
Facts: Brain func­tions can be impacted in a num­ber of ways: through med­i­ta­tion, cog­ni­tive ther­apy, cog­ni­tive training.

Myth 8. We all have some­thing called “Brain Age”.
Facts: Brain age is a fic­tion. No two indi­vid­u­als have the same brain or expres­sion of brain functions.

Myth 9. That “brain age”‚ can be reversed by 10, 20, 30 years.
Facts: Brain train­ing can improve spe­cific brain func­tions, but, with research avail­able today, can­not be said to roll back one “brain age”‚ by a num­ber of years.

Myth 10. All human brains need the same brain train­ing.
Facts: As in phys­i­cal fit­ness, users must ask them­selves: What func­tions do I need to improve on? In what time­frame? What is my budget?

Do you have other myths in mind you would like  us to address?

We have started to receive great feed­back from the health­care com­mu­nity, such as this email from a neu­ro­sur­geon in Texas:

I really like the book, it is com­pre­hen­sive with­out being too tech­ni­cal. I have rec­om­mended it to sev­eral patients. There are some other books that I expected would be greeted with enthu­si­asm, but were too com­plex for most of my patients. I think this book is right in the sweet spot”.

A short, sweet, enter­tain­ing read of a com­plex topic, with timely (writ­ten in 1/09) reviews of 21 top tech­nol­ogy prod­ucts, as well as informed and expert pre­dic­tions of where this bur­geon­ing brain-fitness field is headed. More impor­tantly, after you read it, you’ll have a good, detailed sense of where you, per­son­ally, can act to improve your own couch-potato brain — and how to keep it fit and flex­i­ble your whole life. The Sharp­Brains Guide To Brain Fit­ness reminds of us all why books (and not just googling a topic) can be well worth your time and money. Two Stetho­scopes Up — check it out. life.”

And this great book review by an Internist Physi­cian and Robert Wood John­son Foun­da­tion Fel­low, titled Is Your Brain A Couch Potato?:

Doc Gur­ley, book review for SFGate.com (06/08/09)

The bookThe Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness (avail­able via Amazon.com Here, review copies avail­able upon request).

Descrip­tion: While most of us have heard the phrase “use it or lose it,” very few under­stand what it means, or how to prop­erly ‚“use it”‚¬ in order to main­tain brain func­tion and fit­ness. The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness is an invalu­able guide that helps read­ers nav­i­gate grow­ing brain research and iden­tify the lifestyle fac­tors and prod­ucts that con­tribute to brain health and fit­ness. By gath­er­ing insights from eigh­teen of the world’s top sci­en­tists and offer­ing tools and detailed descrip­tions of over twenty prod­ucts, this book is an essen­tial guide to the field of brain fit­ness, neu­ro­plas­tic­ity and cog­ni­tive health. An acces­si­ble and thought-provoking read, The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness edu­cates life­long learn­ers and pro­fes­sion­als in health­care, edu­ca­tion, busi­ness, etc., on emerg­ing trends and fore­casts of what the future will hold.

Prod­ucts Reviewed (we reviewed sci­en­tific stud­ies pub­lished before Jan­u­ary 2009, when the man­u­script text was closed):

– Over­all brain main­te­nance: Brain Age series (Nin­tendo), Brain­Ware Safari (Learn­ing Enhance­ment Cor­po­ra­tion), FitBrains.com (Viv­ity Labs), Happy-Neuron.com (Sci­en­tific Brain Train­ing), Lumosity.com (Lumos Labs), Mind­Fit (Cog­niFit), (m)Power (Dakim)

– Tar­geted brain work­out: Clas­sic and InSight (Posit Sci­ence), Work­ing Mem­ory Train­ing JM and RM (Cogmed), Dri­ve­Fit (Cog­niFit), Earo­bics (Houghton Mif­flin), Fast For­Word (Sci­en­tific Learn­ing), Intel­li­Gym (Applied Cog­ni­tive Engi­neer­ing), Vision Rest­pra­tion Ther­apy (NovaVision)

– Emo­tional self-regulation: emWave PC and Per­sonal Stress Reliever (Heart­Math), Jour­ney to the Wild Divine (Wild Divine), RES­PeR­ATE (Inter­Cure), StressEraser (Helicor)

Learn about the 2014 SharpBrains Summit in 2 minutes

Watch Larry King’s interview

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