Work on your legs more than your arms or your waistline to improve the health of your brain

Work on your legs more than your arms or your waistline to improve the health of your brain

Whether you dread doing your legs or don’t care as much for them as favoured body parts, like your arms, chest or your abs, working on your legs has a whole host of benefits; considering your things and glutes are the biggest muscle groups in your body.

The most recent study revealed that leg exercises have a direct impact on the brain and the nervous system. 


Weight-bearing exercises, using your legs in particular, sends signals directly to the brain and are a vital for the production of healthy neural cells. 

The results of the study gave doctors new insights as to why patients with motor neuron disease, multiple sclerosis, spinal muscular atrophy and other neurological diseases often rapidly decline when their movement becomes limited.

Reducing the amount of exercise you do makes it difficult for the body to produce new nerve cells


—the very building blocks that allows you to adapt to the stresses and challenges in life. 

The health of you brain directly depends on the signals sent to it by the largest muscles in the body, the legs.

"Our study supports the notion that people who are unable to do load-bearing exercises—such as patients who are bed-ridden, or even astronauts on extended travel —not only lose muscle mass, but their body chemistry is altered at the cellular level and even their nervous system is adversely impacted," said Raffaella Adami from the University of Milan, in Italy.

This research reveals the critical role of movement and has a range of potential implications. "It is no accident that we are meant to be active: to walk, run, crouch to sit, and use our leg muscles to lift things," Adami said.

In fact, decreasing the activity of your legs could decrease the number neural stem cells by 70 percent, according to the study published in the journal Frontiers in Neuroscience.

"Neurological health is not a one-way street with the brain telling the muscles "lift, walk, and so on", Adami said.

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