Weekly Wellness: Exercise is good for my brain? Yes!

8 months 2 weeks 1 day ago Monday, December 03 2018 Dec 3, 2018 Monday, December 03, 2018 2:21:00 PM CST December 03, 2018 in Weekly Wellness
By: Amanda Barnes, KOMU 8 Wellness Coach
loading

COLUMBIA - Have you ever been having a bad day... and you decided (or someone suggested) to go for a walk... and when you got done with your walk, you magically felt better? There's some science behind that.

The human brain is made up of cells called neurons that transmit chemical signals between each other and allow you to interpret the world, both inside and outside. These chemical signals, called neurotransmitters, are responsible for how you feel, how you think, and how you behave. There are approximately 100 neurotransmitters working in the brain to carry out a variety of functions, but two types of neurotransmitters (endorphins and serotonin) are responsible for why you feel so good when you exercise.

If you participate in any endurance activity, your brain releases endorphins. Endorphins are the body’s internal painkiller. So instead of feeling pain, endorphins leave you feeling pleasure.

Serotonin is a mood-boosting neurotransmitter that makes us feel good. But unlike endorphins, which initially block pain to produce pleasure, serotonin promotes pleasure itself. In fact, research has shown that a lack of brain serotonin in some individuals has been associated with depressive illness.

Serotonin is good. We want serotonin. But do we want to take anti-depressant pharmaceuticals to get it? Not necessarily. Maybe we want to get it more naturally... and I have a great way to do that. Research shows us that physical activity can increase brain serotonin levels.

But it’s not just aerobic activity that can relieve symptoms of depression. More recently, strength training—which includes anything from body-weight exercises and resistance-band workouts to machines and free-weight exercises—has also been shown to improve mental health and reduce the incidence of depressive illness.

Additionally, while high levels of exercise-induced serotonin and endorphins have long been associated with better mood, another brain compound—a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)—also promotes cognitive health in areas such as memory, learning and depressive illness (Ratey, 2008). BDNF’s main role is to promote the survival and growth of neurons and to ensure the proper transmission of chemical messages between brain cells. If neurons die, chemical signals are interrupted and cognitive functioning declines. The presence of BDNF strengthens neurons, ensuring their survivability, which means message signaling continues to hum along nicely, sustaining positive mood, intact memory and better learning. It’s no surprise that the best way to trigger production of BDNF protein is—you guessed it—exercise.

(Source: https://www.acefitness.org/education-and-resources/lifestyle/blog/7116/your-brain-on-exercise-the-neuroscience-behind-a-good-workout)

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - A preliminary autopsy performed on Friday could not determine the gender or age of the infant remains found... More >>
2 days ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 3:46:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A series of earthquakes shook parts of Kansas on Friday morning near Hutchinson, knocking... More >>
2 days ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 3:38:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia apologized after a community relations worker took a selfie at a crime scene. ... More >>
2 days ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 2:21:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
VIENNA - A relief fund has been established for six firefighters injured Friday fighting a fire turned explosion at a... More >>
2 days ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 12:34:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - MoDOT is teaming up with a major player in the ride-share industry as part of this year's 'Drive... More >>
3 days ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 3:14:00 AM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
SEDALIA – Governor Mike Parson told reporters Thursday he is considering a special session. The session would involve tax... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 9:14:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
HALLSVILLE - Local businesses, churches, and families painted the town purple and gold to welcome students back on their first... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 7:56:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
JACKSON COUNTY - Authorities have identified the body recovered from Blind Pony Lake earlier this week as Jackson County resident... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 4:50:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Police have identified a body found in north Columbia Thursday as an infant less than one year old.... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 3:16:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - As students start at or return to school, enrollment at Columbia Public schools continues to rise. The... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 1:19:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A man who walked into a Missouri Walmart with loaded weapons and wearing body armor acknowledges... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 11:44:00 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri election officials are defending how they handled a petition to put new abortion restrictions... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 10:32:57 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - University of Missouri police arrested a man Wednesday afternoon after he allegedly exposed himself to a woman, then... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 10:09:48 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
HARRISONVILLE, Mo. (AP) — UPDATE: Police have found the body Sylvia Ussery-Pearson, according to our sister station KSHB . ... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 9:55:00 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A 37-year-old Missouri man is charged with kidnapping the 4-year-old daughter of a woman whose body... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 9:39:20 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — An attorney says a 74-year-old woman is lucky to be alive after a Missouri police officer... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 9:13:00 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A federal judge has ordered sweeping changes to how Missouri's parole board treats prisoners sentenced... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 9:10:53 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa-based grocery store chain is warning customers about what it says is a... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 8:16:00 AM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 87°
12pm 86°
1pm 88°
2pm 90°
3pm 91°