Time for SharpBrains’ July 2012 eNewsletter, featuring in this occasion an in-depth article on why and how to Invest in Brain Health to Drive Innovation and Prosperity, by Veronika Litinski.
- Invest in Brain Health to Drive Innovation and Prosperity, by Veronika Litinski
- Understanding, and Nurturing, Resilience, by Andrew Zolli
- How Do Words, such as Yes and No, Change Our Brains and Lives?, by Dr. Andrew Newberg and Mark Waldman
- Study: Adaptive Working Memory Training Can Reduce ADHD-related Off-Task Behavior, by Dr. David Rabiner
- Promoting Mental Agility through Cognitive Control and Mental Representation, by Judith Tingley, PhD
- Cognitive Monitoring Emerging as Critical for Health
- Gait Changes as Indicator of Cognitive Health Decline
- New & Excellent Review of Computerized Cognitive Training with Older Adults
- Brain Damage, Therapeutics and the Blood-Brain Barrier
- Necomimi Available in USA
- Cardiac Surgery Can Impact Long-term Cognitive Functioning
- Cognitive Deficits May Hinder Self Care in Patients with Heart Failure
- Brain Researchers Start Mapping the Human ‘Connectome’
- More Thumbs Up for 2012 SharpBrains Virtual Summit (23 and counting!)
- Seven Most Popular 2012 SharpBrains Summit Recordings Now Available at $75 each
Have a great month of August!
Below you can find the full transcript of our engaging Q&A session yesterday on holistic brain health with clinical neuropsychologist Dr. Paul Nussbaum, author of Save Your Brain. You can learn more about the full Brain Fitness Q&A Series Here.
Perhaps one of the best exchanges was: [Read more…] about Transcript: Paul Nussbaum on Meditation, Neuropsychology and Thanksgiving
Different parts of the brain support different functions. One function, central to many of our actions, is “attention”. Attention can be defined as the ability to sustain concentration on a particular object, action, or thought.
It can also be defined as the ability to manage competing demands in our environment.connections between neurons, die. In the brain it is supported mainly by neuronal networks in the parietal (yellow in the figure) and frontal (blue in the figure) lobes.
What can be done to maintain and boost such a fundamental ability?
Dr. Andrew Newberg (Associate Professor in the Department of Radiology and Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania), here interviewed by Alvaro Fernandez (CEO of SharpBrains) suggests that meditation may have cognitive benefits, especially related to attention: [Read more…] about Boost your Attention with Meditation
Dear reader and member of SharpBrains’ community,
We want to thank you for your attention and support in 2008, and wish you a Happy, Prosperous, Healthy and Positive 2009!
Below you have the December edition of our monthly newsletter. Enjoy:
Best of 2008
Top 30 Brain Fitness Articles of 2008: We have compiled SharpBrains’ 30 most popular articles, written by thirteen Expert Contributors and staff members for you. Have you read them all?
November-December News: No month goes by without significant news in the field of cognitive fitness. Summarized here are 10 recent developments worthy of attention, including an upcoming brain training product for ice hockey players, my lecture at New York Public Library, and more.
Interviews: Videogames, Meditation
Are videogames good for your brain?: A landmark study by Dr. Arthur Kramer and colleagues has shown that playing a strategy videogame can bring a variety of significant mental benefits to older brains. Another recent study, also by Kramer and colleagues, does not show similar benefits to younger brains (despite playing the same game). How can this be? Dr. Kramer, who has kindly agreed to serve on SharpBrains’ Scientific Advisory Board, elaborates.
Meditation on the Brain: Dr. Andrew Newberg provides an excellent overview of the brain benefits of practices such as meditation. He recommends, “look for something simple, easy to try first, ensuring the practice is compatible with one’s beliefs and goals. You need to match practice with need: understand the specific goals you have in mind, your schedule and lifestyle, and find something practical.”
The Need for Objective Assessments
Cognitive screenings and Alzheimer’s Disease: The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America just released a thoughtful report advocating for widespread cognitive screenings after the age of 65 (55 given the right conditions). SharpBrains readers, probed by Dr. Joshua Steinerman, seem to agree.
Quantitative EEG for ADHD diagnosis: Dr. David Rabiner reports on the findings from a recent study that documents the utility of Quantitative EEG as an objective test to assist in the diagnosis of ADHD. If this procedure were to become more widely used, he suggests, the number of children and adolescents who are inappropriately diagnosed and treated for the disorder would diminish substantially.
Shall we question the brand new book of human troubles?: The fights over the new version of the psychiatric diagnostic manual, the DSM‑V, are starting to come to light. Dr. Vaughan Bell wonders why the public debate avoids the key question of whether diagnosis itself is useful for mental health and why psychometrics are simply ignored.
Resources for Lifelong Learning
Education builds Cognitive Reserve for Alzheimers Disease Protection: Dr. Pascale Michelon reviews a recent study that supports the Cognitive Reserve hypothesis — mentally stimulating experiences throughout life, such as formal education, help build a reserve in our brains that contributes to a lower probability of developing Alzheimer’s symptoms.
5 Tips on Lifelong Learning & the Adult Brain: Laurie Bartels asks us to please please 1) challenge ourselves with new learning, 2) remember that neuroplasticity and neurogenesis are hallmarks of our brains, 3) check for mis-learning on an ongoing basis, 4) more visuals, less text, 5) move it, move it — start today!
Dr. Andrew Newberg is an Associate Professor in the Department of Radiology and Psychiatry and Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. He has published a variety of neuroimaging studies related to aging and dementia. He has also researched the neurophysiological correlates of meditation, prayer, and how brain function is associated with mystical and religious experiences. Alvaro Fernandez interviews him here as part of our research for the book The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness: How to Optimize Brain Health and Performance at Any Age.
Dr. Newberg, thank you for being with us today. Can you please explain the source of your interests at the intersection of brain research and spirituality?
Since I was a kid, I had a keen interest in spiritual practice. I always wondered how spirituality and religion affect us, and over time I came to appreciate how science can help us explore and understand the world around us, including why we humans care about spiritual practices. This, of course, led me to be particularly interested in brain research.
During medical school I was particularly attracted by the problem of consciousness. I was fortunate to meet researcher Dr. Eugene D’Aquili in the early 1990s, who had been doing much research on religious practices effect on brain since the 1970s. Through him I came to see that brain imaging can provide a fascinating window into the brain.
Can we define religion and spirituality ‑which sound to me as very different brain processes‑, and why learning about them may be helpful from a purely secular, scientific point of view?
Good point, definitions matter, since different people may be searching for God in different ways. I view being religious as participating in organized rituals and shared beliefs, such as going to church. Being spiritual, on the other hand, is more of an individual practice, whether we call it meditation, or relaxation, or prayer, aimed at expanding the self, developing a sense of oneness with the universe.
What is happening is that specific practices that have traditionally been associated with religious and spiritual contexts may also be very useful from a mainstream, secular, health point of view, beyond those contexts. Scientists are researching, for example, what [Read more…] about Meditation on the Brain: a Conversation with Andrew Newberg