Learning new things is one of the best ways to improve brain health. Your brain is like a muscle — the more you use it, the stronger it gets. That’s why learning is so important to keep your mind sharp and young.
Learning a musical instrument has been shown to improve cognitive function, hearing, memory and visual processing. And for seniors who began playing an instrument after the age of 65 showed dramatic brain improvement after only 4 or 5 months (playing one hour each week). Another study of seniors from 65-80 years old, showed that the longer a person had spent playing an instrument, the better the brain improvements. They showed improvements on tests of word recall, memory, and cognitive flexibility.
A study of 853 11 year olds, starting in 1947, who were later retested in 2008 and 2010, when they were in there early 70s showed that participants who learned another language performed better than those who did not learn a new language on cognitive and IQ testing. However, further studies showed that it’s never too late. Learning a language as an adult still yields positive results.
Such as woodworking, pottery, or painting. According to a study from the Mayo clinic, middle aged and senior adults who engage hobbies such as painting, drawing or sculpture were 73 percent less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment than those who didn’t. Crafts like pottery, woodworking, quilting and sewing were 45 percent less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment. Experts believe that stimulating with new learning can increase critical growth factors which help brain cells function better and prevent them from dying.
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