Brain Training: Healthy Eating and Workout Motivation is Mental

 

‘Brain training’ is proving effective in helping people make smarter food choices, work out more often, and even cut out unhealthy habits like excessive drinking. See full story on shape.com.

Memory Games and Positive Thinking DO Help!

Daily brain training’ with online programs such as Lumosity’s Memory Matrix, can strengthen willpower and promote healthy lifestyle choices. Researchers in Amsterdam found that problem drinkers who followed challenging cognitive training regimens, like memory games, drank less alcohol than a control group who did only the easiest level of training. One month after the study was completed, the trained participants still had lower drinking rates.

Besides brain-training games, you can also practice positive affirmations.

“Write out your goals and talk to yourself in proactive terms,” says Srini Pillay, author of The Science Behind the Law of Attraction (NBG, 2011) and Life Unlocked (Rodale, 2010).

Be Specific

If you want to train your brain to choose healthy foods over fattening ones, be specific. “When you are too general, the brain is less likely to change its behavior, however, when you are more specific, it has to do less work on its own to help you achieve your goal. This is especially true of weight-loss strategies.”

Physical Fitness is Mental

There is also a link between physical exercise and brain fitness. Studies have found that exercise can lead to neurogenesis (the creation of new brain cells) and exercising your brain can lead to increased willpower.

Different physical exercises rely on different cognitive aspects, such as attention, speed of processing, and even memory. For instance, if you’re taking a new dance class at the gym that requires you to remember all the moves, exercising your attention and memory may make those classes easier to follow and more fun.

See full story on shape.com

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Author: Jen Adair

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