Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Icon

Why we need to extend our mental lifespans to match our physical ones

_________

Beep!’ This is one of the most mad­den­ing com­put­er games I’ve ever played. I’m track­ing a flock of birds, and when I hit the right one, it explodes with a sat­is­fy­ing ‘phutt’. But as I get bet­ter at spot­ting them, the birds scat­ter ever more wild­ly across the screen, and I hear that unfor­giv­ing ‘beep’: you missed.

Frankly, I feel like giv­ing up. But many play­ers don’t dare. For this is Hawk­Eye, a brain-train­ing pro­gram that claims it can sharp­en my brain beyond sim­ply get­ting faster at mouse-click­ing. Tri­als have found that old­er peo­ple who play enough hours of this par­tic­u­lar kind of game have few­er car crash­es — and even, appar­ent­ly, a low­er risk of demen­tia …  Keep read­ing arti­cle Train your brain: How to keep your mind young over at Spec­ta­tor web­site.

Article in context:

Study finds lifelong neurogenesis in the hippocampus, but rates decline with age and, especially, Alzheimer’s disease

Recent, imma­ture neu­rons (in red) and old­er, mature neu­rons (in blue) in the hip­pocam­pus of a 68-year-old’s brain. Cred­it: CSIC

___

Old brains still make neu­rons, study finds, offer­ing a pos­si­ble way to pro­tect against Alzheimer’s (STAT):

Reports of old brains’ decrepi­tude have been great­ly exag­ger­at­ed, sci­en­tists report­ed on Mon­day, unveil­ing results that con­tra­dict a much-dis­cussed 2018 study and instead sup­port the idea that human gray mat­ter is capa­ble of gen­er­at­ing new neu­rons up to the ninth decade of life.

The research, pub­lished in Nature Med­i­cine, also found that old brains from peo­ple with­out demen­tia have much high­er rates of such neu­ro­ge­n­e­sis than Read the rest of this entry »

Study finds promise in smell training to harness neuroplasticity and improve brain health in older adults

___

An impaired sense of smell can sig­nal cog­ni­tive decline, but ‘smell train­ing’ could help (The Con­ver­sa­tion):

As we age, we often have prob­lems with our abil­i­ty to smell (called olfac­to­ry dys­func­tion). Old­er peo­ple might not be able to iden­ti­fy an odour or dif­fer­en­ti­ate one odour from anoth­er. In some cas­es they might not be able to detect an odour at all.

Odour iden­ti­fi­ca­tion dif­fi­cul­ties are com­mon in peo­ple with neu­rode­gen­er­a­tive dis­eases, includ­ing Alzheimer’s dis­ease Read the rest of this entry »

Aerobic exercise–not diet or health education–seen to significantly improve executive functions among older sedentary adults

Aer­o­bic Exer­cise May Be Key to Bet­ter Neu­rocog­ni­tion (Psy­chol­o­gy Today):

Duke Uni­ver­si­ty researchers recent­ly report­ed that just six months of aer­o­bic exercise—for 35 min­utes, three times a week—may improve exec­u­tive func­tion in old­er adults who have cog­ni­tive impair­ments. Before they began doing aer­o­bic exer­cise, the pre­vi­ous­ly seden­tary study par­tic­i­pants had dif­fi­cul­ty con­cen­trat­ing, mak­ing deci­sions, and remem­ber­ing Read the rest of this entry »

Study: Drinking up to 5–8 glasses of wine or beer a week not seen to increase dementia risk

___

There may be a link between alco­hol and demen­tia, but it’s com­pli­cat­ed (Pop­u­lar Sci­ence):

A recent arti­cle in the British Med­ical Jour­nal has rekin­dled the sci­en­tif­ic argu­ment over the rela­tion­ship between abstain­ing from alco­hol and devel­op­ing demen­tia. The study involved 9,000 civ­il ser­vants work­ing in Lon­don, all of whom were Read the rest of this entry »

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 tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

Follow us and Engage via…

twitter_logo_header
RSS Feed

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.