January 19, 2011
Lift Weights For More Brain Power?

Rats made to do muscle-building exercises generated more neurons in their brains.

In a study presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in November, researchers from Brazil secured weights to the tails of a group of rats and had them climb a ladder five sessions a week. Other rats on the same schedule ran on a treadmill, and a third group just sat around. After eight weeks, the running rats had much higher levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (B.D.N.F.), a growth factor that is thought to help spark neurogenesis, than the sedentary rats. So did the rats with weights tied to their tails. The weight-­bearing rats, like the runners, did well on tests of rodent learning and memory, like rapidly negotiating a water maze. Both endurance and weight training seemed to make the rats smarter.

Pump iron for greater brain power? Anyone find this works?

Share |      Randall Parker, 2011 January 19 11:23 PM  Brain Performance

PacRim Jim said at January 20, 2011 1:44 AM:

Put on 10-20 extra pounds and you'll be lifting weight with every step.

RBL said at January 20, 2011 6:55 PM:

Look what it did for Stallone and Schwarzenegger.

south said at January 24, 2011 4:59 PM:

All casual observation of humans heavily involved in these pursuits suggests the opposite.

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