I recently finished an audio book by Lawrence Katz and Manning Rubin on Brain Health past the age of 40. “Keep Your Brain Alive” is a short book, on audio it was roughly 2+ hours to listen to, and contained 83 brain exercises, dubbed “Neurobics” by the authors.
The premise of the authors is that deteriorating memory doesn’t have to be a by-product of growing older. In fact, both make the case that new connections in the brain can be made by taking part in the exercises presented in the book. The first disc of the audio book (roughly half of the text version I’m sure) covers the science behind “Neurobics” while the latter half (the second disc) gives examples of the exercises you can use or modify to help stimulate new growth in your own brain. The authors assert these connections are the key to continued brain health and begin to lessen past age 40 (or even earlier).
Among the suggestions given for brain exercise was to take a shower with your eyes closed. Using your senses of touch and feeling to manage the on/off valves, the soap, and shampoo. Another exercise was to associate scents with a particular place or event. Aromatherapy is quite popular and oils can be purchased for this exercise.
Varying the way we shop for groceries or using our opposite hand for tasks we normally use our dominate hand (or foot) for are other suggestions made by Katz and Rubin. The idea is to vary our routines. Make new associations in different ways (like the aromatherapy) and keep your brain working to manage these changes. Another assertion made by the authors is that age actually helps in neurobics because adults past the age of 40 have a larger bank of memories to draw from to make new associations.
All in all, it’s a fun and helpful guide to make you think about the part of your body that many might just take for granted. I’ve enjoyed the previous work of Doctor Daniel G. Amen in his books on brain health and this book serves as a helpful primer to those who might want to investigate this area further.
As a pastor, I see the value in protecting my brain health. This book is worth your investment to give you some fun ways to “Keep Your Brain Alive”.