Ever feel like you’re losing your marbles? Lack of exercise could be the answer. Due to enforced inactivity I have found I keep forgetting things, I wasn’t forgetful normally so I thought I’d do a bit of research to see if I was blaming the right thing or whether I was getting old!
A new study has found that moderate exercise increases the size of the hippocampus which is the main memory region of the brain. Not only this, but exercise also stimulates nerve cells to produce chemicals (neurotrophic) which encourage brain cells to grow and connect with other neurons eg skeletal muscle. Connections with skeletal muscle are called neuromuscular junctions, at these junctions acetylcholine is produced which is the primary chemical for memory and attention, therefore helping memory function. Exercise also releases numerous other chemicals that help brain function eg, dopamine which is the key chemical messenger for the brain and helps regulate fine motor movements, adrenaline/ noradrenaline which wakes up the brains processing systems.
This means I’m not getting old or going nuts and I’ll be my usual memorable character again very soon, when I can exercise again.