Weekend’s Brain Health Breakfast # 2

Do you want better grades at school, or a way to help your children’s grades? Brainblogger does  a very nice jog explaining a new study in college students finding that physical exercise is related to better grades – better performance in school. He goes on to point out the large number of studies that have already seen this in younger students.

Of course exercising is one way to control your weight and there is new research examining the link between obesity and lifespan. A study finding that being overweight will reduce your lifespan. Now, at first you might say this comes at no surprise but I had read some paper reporting minimal negative outcomes over the last few years, which were suggesting that actual number of years lost for being overweight or obese was not that much. But this is a very large study (1.5 million subjects) and found for every 5 unit increase in BMI there was  a 31% increase risk for death. The link provides more specific data regarding the specific differences between being overweight or obese and its effect on lifespan.

What happens to a males middle age brain .

Postmortem studies have found that a brain structure called the locus coerulus (Latin for “blue spot”) gets progressively smaller and less active in the middle age.  Although the locus contains only 20,000 of the brain’s billions of cells, it seems to play a vital role in many mental functions, including anxiety, as it may activate the “fight or flight” reflex that gets adrenaline flowing in the face of danger.  The locus’s deterioration may possibly explain the mid-life remission of drug addiction and panic attacks and may in part account for the mellowing that makes many men less impulsive and irritable, and more reflective, even altruistic, in middle age.  On the downside, changes in the locus may also cause depression in older men

Taking aspirin may reduce cancer by a considerable amount. Here is a good piece over at PharmaGossip explaining why this new research isn’t being covered much by the popular press – no money to be made by such a generic cheap drug such as aspirin.

Finally, a short post about how playing games can help children mental ability.

1 comment for “Weekend’s Brain Health Breakfast # 2