The following study shows that physical activity can improve brain health. Researchers examined whether physical activity is related to brain volume, cortical thickness, and gray matter density in a large study of 2,550 participants. They found that physical activity dose and intensity were independently associated with larger brain volumes, gray matter density, and cortical thickness of several brain regions.
More time spent in moderate-to-vigorous intensity activities was associated with greater total gray matter volume. The study also suggests that physical activity, particularly light-intensity activities for older adults, can help prevent age-associated brain atrophy and neurodegenerative diseases. The researchers stated that physical activity and reduced sedentary time may be critical in the prevention of age-associated brain atrophy and neurodegenerative diseases.
Fabienne A U Fox, Kersten Diers, Hweeling Lee, Andreas Mayr, Martin Reuter, Monique M B Breteler, N Ahmad Aziz. Association Between Accelerometer-Derived Physical Activity Measurements and Brain Structure: A Population-Based Cohort Study. Neurology. 2022 Sep 13;99(11):e1202-e1215.