SEEDS of a Healthy Brain; Work of Dr. John Arden – Post 2

Yesterday we began a series on the work of Dr. John Arden who writes about the SEEDS of a healthy brain. Today we look at Exercise as the second seed that we can cultivate to best support our brain function as we age. This is what Dr. Arden says about exercise:

“Up until about 11,000 years ago, all humans were hunter-gatherers and moved about 10 miles a day. Today, it’s extraordinarily rare for any of us to move 10 miles a day. But we have the same bodies, and our bodies have evolved to move. Unfortunately, we’re not doing that right now. But exercise – and I’m talking about aerobic exercise, meaning get your heart rate up and sweating a little – is one of the best antidepressants we have. It’s as good as any antidepressant medication and psychotherapy combined.”

WOW! That really is a powerful statement. He goes on to note that exercise will help to calm our nervous system by increasing serotonin, dopamine and GABA (our happy hormones); as well, it actually promotes the growth of new brain cells. In addition, exercise increases our brain’s ability to be alert and to pay attention. And those are just the brain side effects. We know of course that exercise increases our cardiovascular and physical strength as well as our flexibility and endurance.

Bottom line? Get moving! Walking, jogging, a team sport, hiking, canoeing, tread-milling, workout videos – whatever gets your mojo going, commit to even 10 minutes a day. Your brain will thank you 🙂

To visit Dr. John Arden’s website:

Information for this post was partially found in this article by Shane Cochrane:

Photo credit: http://Photo by Gervyn Louis on Unsplash

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