Why Getting Fit at 40 Keeps Your Brain in Good Shape

If you need motivation to getting fit at 40, here are some good reasons why you should take care of your body and do some fitness if you're about that age.

The bottom line is

If you're out of shape at 40, your brain could be smaller by the time you're 60

compared to those that were fit at 40.

Getting fit at 40This is basically what resulted from a research conducted by Nicole L. Spartano, from the Boston University School of Medicine.

The Study

For this research, 1,271 people who participated to the Framingham Heart Study were tested.

People that were 41 years old in 1970 when they were examined with cardiac stress test.

In 1999, when their average age was 60, they underwent brain MRI and cognitive tests.

In subjects in poor shape, blood pressure and heart rate under stress resulted quite higher compared to those that were in better shape at 40.

Now, since the small cerebral vessels are very sensitive to changes in blood pressure, it is possible to result in damage to the cerebral circulation in those who suffer from pressure changes.

And the vascular damage at this level may involve real structural changes in the brain, with consequences on cognitive function

noted the study author.

Getting Fit at 40 to Keep Your Brain in Good Shape Too

And indeed, the researchers found that people who were in lower shape at the beginning of the study, also had lower cognitive performances 20 years later (measured with specific tests).

In particular, not getting fit at 40 may have affected their ability to make decisions 20 years later.

Not just that...

Another good reason to getting fit at 40 comes from this other result that researchers found.

At 60, they noticed a reduction in the volume of the frontal lobe of the brain and signs of reduced cerebral perfusion.

It will be interesting to keep following up with those people for another 10 years to determine the number of cases of dementia that could develop

Said Dr. Spartano,

And see if they can be related to not being fit earlier.

Who knows for sure, but it sounds like what matters is...getting fit at 40!

 

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