Today's Health Topic
Can special exercises help keep your mental "muscles" in shape?
Fear of losing your memory and thinking skills is one of the greatest concerns of getting older. Maybe that's behind the increasing number of clinics offering brain fitness programs. "Brain training" isn't a typical exercise program; it incorporates a number of activities and lifestyle changes to help boost brain function. "It makes very good sense to promote cognitive health using a variety of approaches. I embrace it even as we await more data," says Dr. Kirk Daffner, a neurologist and medical editor of the Harvard Special Health Report Improving Memory.
"People come in with problems accessing words or memories or making decisions, and we do see them improve, although we can't say it's from any one therapy," says neurologist Dr. Alvaro Pascual-Leone, director of the Brain Fit Program at Harvard-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.