We’ve often thought about muscle as a thing that exists separately from intellect—and perhaps that is even oppositional to it, one taking resources from the other. The truth is, our brains and muscles are in constant conversation with each other, sending electrochemical signals back and forth. Thus, our lifelong brain health depends on keeping our muscles moving.
Skeletal muscle is the type of muscle that allows you to move your body around; it is one of the biggest organs in the human body. It is also an endocrine tissue, which means it releases signaling molecules that travel to other parts of your body to tell them to do things. The protein molecules that transmit messages from the skeletal muscle to other tissues—including the brain—are called myokines.
Myokines are released into the bloodstream when your muscles contract, create new cells, or perform other metabolic activities. When they arrive at the brain, they regulate physiological and metabolic responses there, too. As a result, myokines have the ability to affect cognition, mood, and emotional behavior. Exercise further stimulates what scientists call muscle-brain “cross talk,” and these myokine messengers help determine specific beneficial responses in the brain. These can include the formation of new neurons and increased synaptic plasticity, both of which boost learning and memory.
In these ways, strong muscles are essential to healthy brain function.
In young muscle, a small amount of exercise triggers molecular processes that tell the muscle to grow. Muscle fibers sustain damage through strain and stress, and then repair themselves by fusing together and increasing in size and mass. Muscles get stronger by surviving each series of little breakdowns, allowing for regeneration, rejuvenation, regrowth. As we age, the signal sent by exercise becomes much weaker. Though it’s more difficult for older people to gain and maintain muscle mass, it’s still possible to do so, and that maintenance is critical to supporting the brain.
Even moderate exercise can increase metabolism in brain regions important for learning and memory in older adults. And the brain itself has been found to respond to exercise in strikingly physical ways. The hippocampus, a brain structure that plays a major role in learning and memory, shrinks in late adulthood; this can result in an increased risk for dementia. Exercise training can increase the size of the hippocampus, even late in life, protecting against age-related loss and improving spatial memory.
Your mind is in fact an ongoing construction of your brain, your body, and the surrounding world.
Further, there is substantial evidence that certain myokines have sex-differentiated neuroprotective properties. For example, the myokine irisin is influenced by estrogen levels, and postmenopausal women are more susceptible to neurological diseases, which suggests that irisin may also have an important role in protecting neurons against age-related decline.
Studies have shown that even in people with existing brain disease or damage, increased physical activity and motor skills are associated with better cognitive function. People with sarcopenia, or age-related muscle atrophy, are more likely to suffer cognitive decline. Mounting evidence shows that the loss of skeletal muscle mass and function leaves the brain more vulnerable to dysfunction and disease; as a counter to that, exercise improves memory, processing speed, and executive function, especially in older adults. (Exercise also boosts these cognitive abilities in children.)
There’s a robust molecular language being spoken between your muscles and your brain. Exercise helps keep us fluent in that language, even into old age. Source...
Do you find yourself holding on to things just in case you need them? We don’t let go because we might need something in some far-off, nonexistent and probably hypothetical future. We keep too much stuff in the very remote chance that we might need something for trips, vacations or everyday use!
We don't need to hold on to these possessions for that "just in case" moment! We rarely use our just-in-case items—they sit there, take up space, get in the way, and weigh us down. Most of the time they aren’t items we need at all.
The truth of the matter is that when we remove the "just-in-case" items from our lives, we get them out of the way and free up the space they consume. And, that is a very liberating feeling!
We are sharing a technique that is the "brain child" of Joshua & Ryan, "The Minimalists"! They "practice what they preach" and have found a sense of freedom by not having lots of "just-in-case possessions. The technique is called: that 20/20 Rule.
They got rid of or didn't pack anything "just in case". If you can replace an item for less than $20 in less than 20 minutes don't worry about it. This results in less "things" in your possession on a daily basis and less to pack when traveling.
Josh & Ryan found this hypothesis has become a theory that has held true almost all of the time. They rarely have had to replace a just-in-case item, and they have never had to pay more than $20 or have gone more than 20 minutes out of their way to replace the item. This theory usually works 99% of the time for 99% of all items and 99% of all people—including you.
They haven’t missed the hundreds of just-in-case items they've gotten rid of, and they didn’t need to replace most of them.
Getting rid of these items will clear your mind, free up your space, and will take the weight off your shoulders.
What do you consider a "just in case" item? What are you holding on to "just in case"?
You will find more valuable information in their book: Essential
We are sharing information from a website for seniors and retirees that they can go to when they need help.
The "help subjects" include the following:
There are resources listed from all 50 states! If you live in Colorado but have parents, friends or other relatives in other states, this is a great resource.
Articles on their blog include:
Best Workouts for Seniors
Best Gift Ideas for Senior Women Over 50
Best Gift Ideas for Senior Men Over 50
Best Online Meal Services for Seniors
Seniors in Education
Grants for Grandparents
You will find all the above info & more here: https://grantsforseniors.org/
A Helping Hand!
Would you like to do something today or this evening besides watching TV? There are plenty of options for all budgets and situations. You might spend a small amount of time or choose an activity that is very time consuming.
We have also included "Tips for Getting Away from the TV Habit" in case you need a few ways to remind yourself of your new plan!
Here's your list of "Things to do Instead of Watching TV"
1. Read a Book
2. Write Something
3. Go for an Evening Walk
4. Get Fit
5. Create Art
6. Make an Elaborate Dinner
7. Learn a New Skill or Language
8. Spend Quality Time with Your Family
9. Call a Friend
10. Deal with Those Annoying Chores
11. Spruce Up or Redecorate a Room in Your House
12. Expand Your Horizons
13. Join a Club
14. Make Plans for the Future
15. Work Towards Your Goals
You will find an explanation for each of the above items as well as "Tips for Getting Away from the TV Habit" here...
Let's hear it for Trivia!
Here's a free trivia quiz website that provides free trivia quizzes on a multitude of subjects.
It has a variety of trivia games for adults as well as kids. Topics covered include U.S. history, geography, Harry Potter, Disney films, science, sports, holidays general knowledge, Bible trivia, movies, music and more!
All of the free trivia quizzes are in multiple choice format, so even if you don’t know the answer, you’ve still got a chance to guess correctly! Have fun and let us know what your favorite category is!
Here's the link:
Let's hear it for IQ Tests!
You can take quick, free IQ tests that provide instant results and will also show you where your score sits compared to the full spectrum of IQ ranges.
Here's the link: