“30 Minutes of Aerobic Exercise Supercharges Semantic Memory”
As the authors explain, “A single 10-minute bout of very light-intensity exercise (30% VO2 max effort) results in rapid enhancement in pattern separation and an increase in functional connectivity between hippocampal DG/CA3 and cortical regions (i.e., parahippocampal, angular, and fusiform gyri). These results suggest that brief, very light exercise rapidly enhances hippocampal memory function.”
Increasingly, the holy grail for neuroscientists studying the brain benefits of exercise is to dial in on the optimal “dose” (intensity × duration) of cardiovascular exercise or easy/light movement that is required to elicit various cognitive outcomes in the short- and long-term.
This week, a new study from the University of Maryland, “Semantic Memory Activation After Acute Exercise in Healthy Older Adults,” was published online ahead of print in the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society . This research advances our understanding of the dose-response needed to activate brain circuits associated with semantic memory. Generally speaking, this refers to memories that relate to language, words, and names.