Greg's Comments: Wow that's amazing... I've just signed up for my first Yoga session! Who would have thought that something so simple could have that much of a profound effect on the body and help protect us against the devastating effects of cognitive decline.
Yoga Helps Protect Against Dementia... Seriously
Downward dogs and warrior pose build a strong, healthy prefrontal cortex and protect your brain against age-associated cognitive decline. Looking for differences in brain structure, researchers recruited 21 women aged 60+ who had practiced yoga at least twice a week for a minimum of eight years. They were then compared to 21 age-matched controls who had not practiced yoga. All participants’ brains were scanned using MRIs, where a greater thickness in the left prefrontal cortex (responsible for attention and memory) was seen in the yoginis. These results enlighten us to the ability of yoga to change the structure of the brain and protect cognitive functioning into old age.
Reference: Afonso RF, Balardin JB, Lazar S, Sato JR, Igarashi N, Santaella DF, et al. Greater Cortical Thickness in Elderly Female Yoga Practitioners—A Cross-Sectional Study. Front Aging Neurosci. 2017 June 20;9:1-6. DOI: 10.3389/fnagi.2017.00201.