Brain Care Is Clarified With Understanding Mechanisms of Intelligence

By Suzanne Holman • March 10th, 2011


 

How many suggestions have you heard just this week for how to improve your memory or to avoid getting Alzheimer's disease?

It's overwhelming and confusing to sort through the multiple supplements, foods, brain games, and other techniques that are being touted as the latest and greatest support for your brain.

What makes it so difficult for even the best of scientists to tell us how to improve our brain is that the mechanisms of intelligence are not understood nearly as well as the mechanisms of muscular strength.  If these mechanisms of intelligence were better understood, logical conclusions could be made as to the effectiveness of various strategies to improve our brain functioning.

All the research in neuroscience is gradually showing us the mechanisms of cognition. “We have accumulated enough knowledge about the mechanisms and molecular underpinnings of cognitionat the synaptic and circuit levels to say something about which processes contribute,” says James Bibb of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, who organized a symposium on “cognitive enhancement strategies” at the 2010 meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.

Having more neurons or synapses gives you greater cognitive capacity.  This is possible with neurogenesis (creation of new neurons), particularly in the memory-forming hippocampus.

Neurogenesis and synapse creation increases learning, memory, reasoning, and creativity.

Doing what we already know how to do doesn't increase our cognitive functioning.  

Attention is the key.  

Your brain pays attention to what is new and that is what creates the new neurons and the synapses that allow communication between the neurons.

So, there you go!

It's tIme to get out there and try something new.  Attack a new challenge.  Learn a new exercise or dance move.

You'll find that your brain will respond with energetic interest and the neurogenesis process will be accelerated.

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