Jan. 20, 2010
Aerobic exercise such as running or jogging stimulates the growth of new brain cells and improves the memory and ability to learn. Scientists divided mice into two groups: one group was given a running wheel they could use at any time, and the other group was given a couch and TV with remote control had no exercise wheel. The study showed that even a few days of running stimulates the brain to grow new cells in a part of the brain involved in memory and recall, and the exercised mice performed better on memory and learning tests. The new study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Previous studies have shown increased neural stem cell production can be induced by exercise, even in aged mice, and that new brain stem cells are important for memory and learning. Earlier work suggested that exercise stimulated neural stem cell formation in humans as well.
Another advantage of running is that you can generate some electricity.