There is an acceleration of interest in promoting cognitive and neuropsychological 'exercise' for a healthy brain, especially over the course of aging. Though most mainstream-media articles about this report it as a new phenomenon, it really is not. Over the past 25 years, if not longer, neuropsychologists have been recommending such activities for subsets of relevant patients that they have examined.
What is new is the healthy burst of new energy and interest and - one hopes - a healthy dose of clinical-trials testing to assure that this 'exercise' actually has a firm foundational basis to it and a careful mapping against specific individual attributes - especially if someone is going to have to foot the bill for access to it. Even without these newly emerging approaches, it is a given of common sense that it is better to be an active person than an inactive one - just keep those brain juices flowing, folks!
I'd like to think that a crossword puzzle a day - like the proverbial apple - can keep the doctor away. For these newer and more ambitious approaches, a critical research eye and the professional eagerness to test these approaches with objectivity will take us far.
A new article at Wired.com includes quotes from Drs. Elkhonon Goldberg and Margaret Gatz, as well as reference to the excellent programmatic research of "The Nun Study." Here's the link:
Brain Workouts May Tone Memory
By Joanna Glasner
02:00 AM Aug. 04, 2005 PT
[ ... Read the article ... ]
Anthony H. Risser | neuroscience | neuropsychology | brain