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Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Six minutes of proper exercise reduces the risk of disease. How to train?

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Just six minutes of intense physical activity can increase the level of the BGNF protein in the brain, which plays an important role in the work of the nervous system, and thus reduces the risk of developing Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, scientists say. How to exercise?

Performing short but intense physical exercise daily allows you to enjoy mental performance for longer and delays the development of neurodegenerative diseases, researchers reported in the journal “The Journal of Physiology”.

SEE ALSO: Even three minutes of exercise can extend your life. “Playing with kids, bringing shopping”

Six minutes of such exercises are enough

Researchers from the University of Otago in New Zealand have been looking for non-pharmacological methods to increase BDNF protein levels in the brain. This protein plays an important role in the functioning of the nervous system. It takes part in the processes related to learning and memory and protects the brain against the loss of cognitive functions, and also affects neuroplasticity, i.e. the brain’s ability to create new synaptic connections.

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Researchers compared the effects of a 20-hour fast, light exercise (90 minutes of moderate-intensity cycling), high-intensity exercise (6 minutes of fast cycling), and a combination of fasting and exercise. The study involved 12 physically active people (6 women and 6 men) aged 18 to 56 years.

It turned out that short intense exercise was the most effective – six minutes of intense cycling increased the production of BDNF protein. Thanks to them, protein levels increased almost five times compared to fasting and low-intensity exercise.

SEE ALSO: Blood test instead of tomography or MRI. A new method for detecting Alzheimer’s disease has been developed

Non-pharmacological methods are crucial, say the researchers

While the mechanism by which intense exercise works is not yet understood, the authors believe that its effect on increasing BDNF levels may be related to glucose metabolism and the brain switching from one primary energy source to another to provide enough energy for the body. Increasing the level of BDNF can also be the result of an increase in the number of platelets, which store large amounts of this protein.

“Previous attempts to safely increase the pharmacological level of BDNF in humans have not yielded satisfactory results. Therefore, it is important to explore non-pharmacological methods that allow to naturally increase the level of BDNF, and thus reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease” – write the authors of the publication.

Main photo source: Shutterstock



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