Sustained aerobic exercise (running) grows new brain cell, but lifting weights does not, a new study concludes.
- Sustained aerobic exercise
- High-intensity interval training
- Lifting weights
Compared with a control group, they had 2-3 times as many neurons in the hippocampus.
Interval training only had a small effect and lifting weights had no effect on growing new brain cells.
“Our results suggest physical exercise promotes AHN [adult hippocampal neurogenesis] most if it is aerobic and sustained, and especially when accompanied by a heightened genetic predisposition for response to physical exercise.”While this study was carried out in rats, there is plenty of evidence for the positive effects of exercise on neurogenesis (growing new brain cells).