Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News


Large study to study impact on early brain development of financial assistance to low-income mothers


Does grow­ing up poor harm brain devel­op­ment? (The Econ­o­mist):

Plen­ty of evi­dence sug­gests that grow­ing up poor, liv­ing through these kinds of scrapes, has a detri­men­tal impact on child devel­op­ment. Chil­dren from rich fam­i­lies tend to have bet­ter lan­guage and mem­o­ry skills than those from poor fam­i­lies. More afflu­ent chil­dren usu­al­ly per­form bet­ter in school, and are less like­ly to end up in jail. Grow­ing up poor risks the devel­op­ment of a small­er cere­bral cor­tex. But these are asso­ci­a­tions Read the rest of this entry »

Understanding the “It” in “Use It or Lose It”

From Macro to Micro: A Visu­al Guide to the Brain (IEEE Spec­trum)

In the human brain, high­er-lev­el infor­ma­tion pro­cess­ing occurs in the neo­cor­tex, neur­al tis­sue that forms the out­er lay­er of the cere­bral cor­tex. In its intri­cate folds, brain cells work togeth­er to inter­pret sen­so­ry infor­ma­tion and to form thoughts and plans. The neo­cor­tex is divid­ed into regions that take the lead on dif­fer­ent types of pro­cess­ing. How­ev­er, much of today’s neu­ro­science research focus­es on map­ping the con­nec­tome: the neur­al con­nec­tions between regions…Keep Read­ing Arti­cle.

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Forget thinking vs. feeling dichotomy. Think/ feel holistic brain functioning

brain teasers cognitive stimulationMen­tal Math and the Fine-Tun­ing of Emo­tions (The Dana Foun­da­tion)

You often hear the word “cal­cu­lat­ing” used to describe some­one who always seems to act delib­er­ate­ly, guid­ed by rea­son rather than emo­tion. The idea behind this char­ac­ter­i­za­tion is that human nature strad­dles a deep divide between think­ing and feel­ing, but cur­rent research sug­gests oth­er­wise. Brain-imag­ing stud­ies, in par­tic­u­lar, reveal an over­lap between the sites in the brain that make it pos­si­ble for us to per­form men­tal arith­metic and those that enable us to reg­u­late our emo­tions. In fact, these two dis­sim­i­lar-seem­ing func­tions are housed in the same neigh­bor­hood of the cere­bral cor­tex. But they don’t just reside near each other—they actu­al­ly work togeth­er. “It’s pos­si­ble that train­ing the brain with men­tal math strength­ens the capac­i­ty for emo­tion­al reap­praisal, or per­haps con­tin­u­al­ly run­ning the process of emo­tion­al reap­praisal increas­es the abil­i­ty for men­tal cal­cu­la­tions of oth­er kinds like men­tal arith­metic.”

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A new era of brain cartography, powered by neuroimaging and machine learning



Human brain mapped in unprece­dent­ed detail (Nature):

Think of a spin­ning globe and the patch­work of coun­tries it depicts: such maps help us to under­stand where we are, and that nations dif­fer from one anoth­er. Now, neu­ro­sci­en­tists have chart­ed an equiv­a­lent map of the brain’s out­er­most lay­er — the cere­bral cor­tex — sub­di­vid­ing each hemisphere’s moun­tain- and val­ley-like folds into Read the rest of this entry »

#13. Brain teaser to exercise your cognitive skills: Where do words go?

Temporal lobe Frontal LobeWords are stored in the tem­po­ral lobe of your brain (in green on the cere­bral cor­tex image  to the left). But on which brain hemi­sphere, right or left? As you know, your brain has two sides (two hemi­spheres) con­nected by the cor­pus cal­lo­sum. You have one tem­po­ral lobe on each side of the brain.

If you are right-hand­ed, Read the rest of this entry »

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

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