Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Icon

“I am excited”: Making Stress Work for You, Instead of Against You

Image: The Yerkes-Dodson Law (YDL)

How much stress is good for you?

In 1908, Robert Mearns Yerkes and John Dillingham Dodson designed an experiment that would begin to tackle the question, “How much stress is good for you?”

The researchers tracked mice to see how stress would affect their ability to learn. Simple—yet painful, because how do you stress out mice? Read the rest of this entry »

Managing brains, not bodies, in the knowledge economy

pink_brain

[Photo: Flickr user_DJ_, Brian Snelson via Wikimedia Commons]

This Outdated Approach To Productivity Is Bad For Your Brain (Fast Company):

“Your car has parts that perform specific tasks. The radiator cools the engine. The spark plugs ignite the gas. The intake manifold distributes air and gas evenly to the cylinders. We think of a car this way because a car is a machine.

For most of the 20th century, scientists mapped the brain in the same way Read the rest of this entry »

New Report: Human Enhancement and the Future of Work

Summary of the report just issued by The Royal Society in the UK: “Although the impact of human enhancement technologies has been widely debated, until now they have not been considered in terms of their impact upon the nature of work…the Academy of Medical Sciences, British Academy, Royal Academy of Engineering and Royal Society came together to Read the rest of this entry »

Longevity, Conscientiousness and Work

There’s an excellent article in the New York Times (Eighty Years Along, a Longevity Study Still Has Ground to Cover) about a very worthy new book based on a fascinating series of research studies: The Longevity Project: Surprising Discoveries for Health and Long Life from the Landmark Eight-Decade Study is the book where UC-Riverside researchers Howard Friedman and Leslie Martin draw key lessons from an eight-decade-long Stanford University Terman study of 1,500 people.

Quotes from the article:

– Many assume biology is the critical factor in longevity. If your parents lived to be 85, you probably will, too. Not so, Dr. Friedman said. Read the rest of this entry »

When early retirement equals mental retirement and memory decline

The New-York Times reports on the study published a few days ago in the Journal of Economic Perspectives, “Mental retirement”:

… Data from the United States, England and 11 other European countries suggest that the earlier people retire, the more quickly their memories decline.

… what aspect of work is doing that, Dr. Suzman said. “Is it the social engagement and interaction or the cognitive component of work, or is it the aerobic component of work?” he asked. “Or is it the absence of what happens when you retire, which could be increased TV watching?”

Comments: This new study is another piece of evidence accumulating with more and more others suggesting that a brain healthy life-style requires constant cognitive challenge to help maintain high-level cognitive functions. Whether it is speaking multiple languages, physically exercising or staying mentally active, our everyday life can positively impact our brain health.  Something to keep in mind after retirement…and to even retire the word “retirement”!

The results are also intriguing because working combines multiple aspects of a brain-healthy lifestyle (social engagement, mental stimulation) with aspects not so good for the brain (stress, absence of physical exercise in some cases). However, it seems that, overall, the good aspects of working take over the bad ones as far as memory functions are concerned.

About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters, and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm and think tank tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

Special offer valid until May 1st, 2017


Search for anything brain-related in our article archives

Enter Your Email to receive Sharp­Brains free, monthly eNewslet­ter:

Join more than 50,000 Sub­scribers and stay informed and engaged.