It’s no secret that physical activity has many health effects.
Some studies even emphasize how any type of movement—from walking and running, to gardening and house cleaning, and more—is beneficial.
And of course, there are general recommendations about exactly how much exercise you need to reap the rewards.
But what if adding just NINE extra minutes to your routine could ultimately protect your aging BRAIN?
Less than 10 minutes daily
A new analysis included nearly 4,500 participants in the British Cohort Study. Subjects were born in 1970 across England, Scotland, and Wales. And they were followed throughout childhood and adulthood.
A device was used to monitor their activity levels, allowing researchers to differentiate between:
- Moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA), like running or cycling
- Light intensity physical activity (LIPA), like slow walking, standing, or stair climbing
- Sedentary time, like sitting or lying down
Ultimately, they found just nine additional minutes of MVPA daily led to an improvement in brain function.
Now, plenty of other research has linked physical activity with delayed cognitive decline. But what’s unique about this study is that the researchers tried to pinpoint intensity and duration.
Small commitments lead to REAL changes
Let’s break the findings down a bit further…
After some adjustments, researchers found the following:
- 31 percent improvement in cognition after replacing nine minutes of sedentary time with MVPA
- 27 percent improvement after replacing seven minutes of LIPA with MVPA
- 2 percent improvement after replacing seven minutes of sleep with MVPA
While that may not seem like a big difference, hear me out…
These SMALL commitments lead to real changes in cognitive health. And in my view, that’s HUGE.
On the other hand, replacing MVPA with eight minutes of sitting—or LIPA with seven minutes of sleep—was linked to a one- to two-percent DECLINE in cognition.
The bottom line?
Any type of regular activity is better than none. And, in this crazy world of sitting in front of computers to do our jobs or stay connected, television screens or smart devices to pass time, and more—the reminder is more important than ever.
Because taking a short 10-minute break for a brisk walk may be all you need to keep your brain humming along. (You might even improve your mental health along the way!)
For more tips about how to protect your aging brain, check out my Alzheimer’s Prevention and Treatment Plan. Click here to learn more!
“Nine More Minutes a Day of Vigorous Exercise Tied to Better Cognition.” Medscape, 01/25/2023. (medscape.com/viewarticle/987479)