Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News


Encephalon #12 is out

and served with a great dose of humor at AlphaPsy blog. Enjoy

Stress Management as part of Brain Fitness Programs

The arti­cle Job Stress Fuels Dis­ease reports on the results from a new study of 677 work­ers that show that “When work stress becomes unman­age­able, job burnout can lead to a com­bi­na­tion of three symptoms:

  • Emo­tional exhaustion
  • Phys­i­cal fatigue or exhaustion
  • Cog­ni­tive weari­ness (slow thinking)”

and that “Stud­ies have shown that work­place stress can lead to an increase in rates of heart dis­ease, flu virus, meta­bolic syn­drome and high blood pressure.”

Which is why we are equally focused on Men­tal Stimulation/ Brain Exer­cise Pro­grams and on Stress Management-both are needed for Brain Fitness.

You can read more on the topic, and learn some tips:

Brain Coach Answers: I’m a mother of 2, with a career. Are there any quick ways to reduce stress?

Good Stress and Bad Stress

Brain Yoga: Stress — Killing You Softly

Lifelong Learning and Brain Training

Very fun ses­sion today at the Osher Life­long Learn­ing Insti­tute, titled Exer­cis­ing our Brains: new Brain Research and impli­ca­tions for our Lives. As usual, we com­bined some research back­ground with many fun group activ­i­ties, such as the ones you will find in our Brain Exer­cises sec­tion (click here).Want to try a brain teaser? Please count the num­ber of times that the let­ter “f” appears in this sentence:

Fin­ished files are the result of years of sci­en­tific study com­bined with the expe­ri­ence of years” (The solu­tion appears as first com­ment for this post).

We reviewed some areas that typ­i­cally improve as we age, such as Self-regulation, Emo­tional func­tion­ing and Wis­dom, defined as Pat­tern recognition build­ing on the accu­mu­la­tion of expe­ri­ences.
Read the rest of this entry »

Brain teaser: Are there more brain connections in one human brain or leaves in the whole Amazon?

neural connections

QUESTION: How many neu­rons do you have (approx­i­mately? How many con­nec­tions can each have?

ANSWER: Accord­ing to the London-based Sci­ence Museum, “Your brain is the hub of your ner­vous sys­tem. It is made up of 100 bil­lion nerve cells — about the same as the num­ber of trees in the Ama­zon rain­for­est. Each cell is con­nected to around 10,000 oth­ers. So the total num­ber of con­nec­tions in your brain is the same as the num­ber of leaves in the rain­for­est — about 1000 trillion”.

PS: Enjoy these 50 brain teasers to test your cog­ni­tive abil­ity. Free, and fun for adults of any age!

About this Blog

Your Win­dow into the Brain Fit­ness Rev­o­lu­tion offers a mix of fun brain teasers and seri­ous com­men­tary, focused on the impli­ca­tions of cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science research on Health, Edu­ca­tion and Cor­po­rate Training.

Sharp­Brains’ Mis­sion is to make Mind Fit­ness avail­able to all by rais­ing pub­lic aware­ness and help­ing bring to mar­ket neuroscience-based prod­ucts and pro­grams, a.k.a. “brain gyms”.


Alvaro Fer­nan­dez is Man­ag­ing Direc­tor of Sharp­Brains, Inc. He holds an MBA and MA in Edu­ca­tion from Stan­ford Uni­ver­sity. Alvaro started his career in McK­in­sey & Com­pany in Europe and has par­tic­i­pated in the launch of online book­store Ber­tels­mann Online, the turn­around of cor­po­rate e-learning com­pany Docent, Inc, and the launch of a new busi­ness unit of Edu­soft, a Houghton Mif­flin com­pany. He enjoys advis­ing the man­age­ment teams at social enter­prises Ashoka, abcd espanol and Arcan­d­ina, and teach­ing the class  Exer­cis­ing Our Brains  at the Bay Area Osher Life­long Learn­ing Center.

alvaro123 (at) sharpbrains456 (dot) com. (Note: Get rid of the numbers.)

Con­tribut­ing Editor:

Car­o­line Latham serves as Direc­tor of Com­mu­ni­ca­tions for Sharp­Brains. She received her under­grad­u­ate degree in exper­i­men­tal psy­chol­ogy from David­son Col­lege and worked in research labs study­ing human mem­ory, pain per­cep­tion, ocu­lo­mo­tor behav­ior, and atten­tion. After sev­eral years work­ing towards a com­bined MD/PhD in neu­ro­surgery and neu­ro­science at the Uni­ver­sity of Texas Med­ical Branch, she launched her career work­ing with med­ical and health-related com­pa­nies and publications.

Advi­sory Board

Dr. Phil Delio, Asso­ciate Direc­tor of Stroke Ser­vices at the Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Insti­tute of Santa Bar­bara. For­mer Chief Neu­rol­ogy Res­i­dent at Stan­ford University.

Dr. David Gamon is a best-selling author focused on mak­ing brain research excit­ing and acces­si­ble to all read­ers. While Build­ing Men­tal Mus­cle is his best-known work, he has authored or co-authored a total of 10 books in the Brain­waves line of pop­u­lar brain sci­ence books. He stud­ied Ger­man lit­er­a­ture at Reed Col­lege and cog­ni­tive sci­ence at U.C. Berke­ley, where he received his Ph.D. in Lin­guis­tics. He serves as con­tribut­ing writer to the Curi­ous Mind newslet­ter and the Sci­ence­Mas­ter sci­ence edu­ca­tion web­site, win­ner of the National Acad­emy Press’s “Coolest Sci­ence Site” award. His cur­rent projects include books about the brain’s con­struc­tion of sen­sory real­ity; humor and the brain; the sci­ence of psy­chopa­thy; and the evo­lu­tion of language.

Dr. Elkhonon Gold­berg is an author, sci­en­tist, edu­ca­tor and clin­i­cian, inter­na­tion­ally renowned for his clin­i­cal work, research, writ­ings and teach­ing in neu­ropsy­chol­ogy and cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science. He is a Clin­i­cal Pro­fes­sor of Neu­rol­ogy at New York Uni­ver­sity School of Med­i­cine, and Diplo­mate of The Amer­i­can Board of Pro­fes­sional Psy­chol­ogy in Clin­i­cal Neu­ropsy­chol­ogy. A stu­dent and close asso­ciate of the great neu­ropsy­chol­o­gist Alexan­der Luria, Dr. Gold­berg has con­tin­ued to advance Luria’s sci­en­tific and clin­i­cal tra­di­tion, and writ­ten pop­u­lar sci­ence books such as The Exec­u­tive Brain and The Wis­dom Paradox.

Susan Hoff­man launched and now leads the San Fran­cisco State University’s Osher Life­long Learn­ing Insti­tute, and is a Board mem­ber of Gate­way High school. Susan’s cre­ative work-screenplays, sto­ries, com­men­taries– has appeared in small press and main­stream pub­li­ca­tions as well as on-screen. For many years, she ran a per­form­ing arts venue at Fort Mason Cen­ter and rep­re­sented arts orga­ni­za­tions in Sacra­mento and Wash­ing­ton as the state’s arts advocate.

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, CNN,, and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking health and wellness applications of brain science. Explore our most popular resources HERE.

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