Regular exercise is not just beneficial for physical health, but it also has many positive effects on psychological, emotional, and brain health. Studies say that seniors with dementia and cognitive disorders can also benefit a lot from regular exercise. Below are a few ways in which exercise affects the brain in seniors for the better.

Exercise Helps to Keep Anxiety and Depression at Bay
Physical workout can stimulate the nervous system and help to release many different chemicals in the brain, which can be helpful to manage the symptoms of anxiety and depression. As per the reports of the Frontiers in Psychiatry, “Exercise can improve depressive symptoms and this is observed even in those suffering from a major depressive disorder.”

Exercise Helps to Promote Blood Flow to the Brain
Studies have found that regular exercise can increase the blood flow to the brain in seniors. This can help elders to maintain good mental health. According to Dr. Judy Wilson, Oakley Assisted Living, “You’re getting more oxygen to your brain, and you’re getting more nutrients. More blood flow to the brain means that cells have more fuel to operate.”
Exercise Helps to Protect the Brain Cells
Dr. Cameron says, “A very important thing exercise does is it turns on the expression of specific genes, and many of the genes it expresses are neuroprotective: they cause the production and the secretion of proteins that we call neurotrophic factors, meaning they cause brain cells to make substances that protect them from damage.” This can help to avoid the toxic and destructive chemicals from harming the brain cells in seniors.

Exercise Helps to Produce New Brain Cells
Following a regular workout schedule can help to boost the production of new brain cells. It is found that seniors who exercise regularly experience increased production of glial cells and new neurons in the hippocampus, which helps to manage the brain’s support network. This in turn helps to maintain good physical and mental health in seniors.

Simple exercises like aerobics, jogging, yoga, or swimming can have many positive effects on the heart and circulatory system of seniors. This helps to maintain a good supply of oxygen to the brain, which works to stimulate the production of glial cells, and leads to greater neuroprotective effects. It does not need to be a strenuous physical workout to reap the aforementioned benefits either. “That’s a message that we really need to get out there,” Dr. Cameron adds. “You don’t need to exercise and sweat. If you just move more, it will be good for your brain. It’s not such a high hurdle.”

Author's Bio: 

Seeking health, happiness, living a good life and writing. I also am a pharmacist, a health coach, love yoga and exercise. My great passion is bringing healing to people who have been through a traumatic/stressful experience.