For everything the human brain has accomplished, it’s a little ironic that our brains don’t fully understand how they, themselves, actually work. Dr. Paul Nussbaum(FitBrains CSO) is getting closer to understanding, and his new book, “Your Brain Health Lifestyle,” is all about how to make the most of your brain. Click here for the video of Dr. Nussbaum talking about brain health on Twin Cities Live
- Antioxidants clean up harmful free radicals – free radicals lead to decline in cell function
- Get antioxidants from beta-carotenes, vitamins A, C, E, and mineral selenium
- Read and write daily – try things that are novel and complex
- Developing a good language system is linked to a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s
- Do puzzles and games that are “novel and complex” – playing Scrabble every single day won’t do it, so change it up!
- Try writing with your non-dominant hand
This is a typical question raised by the market as the business of computerized brain fitness software grows. It is clear that the human brain is capable of being shaped with greatest growth seen perhaps in the latter rather than younger years. There are a variety of products to choose from and the consumer is correct to have questions about the what and why regarding these software training games.
Research has been published supporting both the short term and long term benefits (five years) of using computerized brain fitness software to improve cognitive skills. A recent study from the University of Michigan showed study participants improved their fluid intelligence after consistent training. Researchers explained the utility of such training due to its complexity and transfer of skill acquisition to multiple cognitive domains, not just to the skill being trained. This is one way computerized training is explained to be better than crossword puzzles that may simply train a procedure.
To the extent that brain fitness software provides novel and complex stimuli (e.g. brain games), is fun, and is practical with application to everyday mental challenges I believe it will survive and thrive. If the software training programs are mundane, non personal and not fun the consumer will likely not remain engaged. The latter is a necessary factor for success of the computerized training.
Consumers would be wise to review the science behind the computerized training, select products that they will use, products that provide training in real world cognitive challenges, and that are fun.