Why Dumbbells Make You Smarter
Turns out there's a link between strength training and brain fitness. So much so that a recent study published in the Archives of Neurology discovered that people with more muscle strength cut their chances of developing Alzheimer's in half! The study was conducted on a group of people with an average age of 80 years. Among this group, only one out of ten people with stronger muscles developed Alzheimer's, compared to two out of ten people with weaker muscles.
Another study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, has shown that strength training has even more impact on brain fitness than balance and toning exercises. The study followed 155 women ages 65 to 75. Half the women were asked to work out with dumbbells and weight machines a couple times a week for a year. The other half were asked to spend that year doing balance and toning exercises. At the end of the study, the women who had worked out with the weights also improved their scores on cognitive tests, testing higher in the ability to make decisions, resolve conflicts and focus. The women who had done balance and toning exercises, however, actually showed a slight deterioration in cognitive skills.