We all know how important it is to move our bodies daily.
From strengthening muscles and getting better sleep to helping heart health, daily movement is essential.
But it also has a huge impact on our brains, too – and new research says even a little can go a long way for women.
In fact, a new study published in the American Academy of Neurology says that some benefits of exercise are more evident for women than men.
It seems even short bursts of exercise improve the processing speed in women’s brains.
This can be something as little as 15 minutes a week of brisk walking or biking – but it can help people think more quickly, and also slow the delay in processing speed, which older individuals often experience.
‘We found that greater physical activity was associated with greater thinking speed reserve in women – but not in men,’ said study author Judy Pa, a professor of neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego.
Findings showed a doubled increase in physical activity was equivalent to about 2.75 fewer years of processing speed aging in women.
As a result, it’s clear women’s mental processing speed may actually benefit more than men from a boost of exercise.
However, the study also found that cognitive activities – such as playing card games and reading – are also helpful for the processing speed for both men and women.
‘Taking part in more mental activities was associated with greater thinking speed reserve for both men and women,’ adds Judy.
But it’s also worth pointing out that any positive association between cognitive activities and memory reserve only applied to women.
So the new research offers a fasincating insight into the breakdown of how mental and phsycial activity can affect men and women’s brain power differently.
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