We all know that walking is good for physical and mental health. But did you know that walking can keep your brain healthy and slow the progression of memory loss? A recent study found that middle-aged and older people with early signs of memory loss increased their cognitive health after they started walking frequently. This is because walking increases oxygen and blood flow to all parts of the body, including the brain.
What happens to our brains when we walk
If our brains receive more oxygen, that’s a good thing. According to Neuropeak Pro, our brains use about 20% of our body’s total oxygen supply, so if we don’t get enough oxygen up there, it’s easy to feel “foggy.”
Additionally, a third of our brain is made up of blood vessels. So with increased blood flow to the brain, there is better cognitive function, improved memory, and protection against decline.
Walking several times a week for 30 to 60 minutes can:
- Keep thinking, reasoning and learning skills sharp
- Improve memory and cognitive function for people with mild Alzheimer’s disease or mild cognitive impairment
- Slow the progress of Alzheimer’s
- Increase the size of the part of the brain that’s associated with memory formation.
More research is needed to know how physical activity may improve memory. However, it is important to walk and exercise to stay healthy physically and mentally. At Next Day Access, our goal is to help you keep safe and comfortable while aging in place. We offer accessibility and mobility solutions for your home. Contact us to schedule a free home-assessment.