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Train Your Brain More: 60 Days to an Even Better Brain Excerpt from Train Your Brain More: 60 Days to an Even Better Brain

by Dr. Ryuta Kawashima


Why should you train your brain?

This book is a follow-up to Train Your Brain: 60 Days to a Better Brain. I've received lots of letters from readers since the first book came out, and I'm delighted to know that people all over the world are now making these drills a regular part of their daily routine. To keep things fresh, we have made one change to the format of the exercises. We have included some simple division problems for you to solve as you work through your daily brain-training exercises. Brain function naturally begins to deteriorate after our twenties, just like our physical and muscular strength gradually weaken as we age. However, just as you can maintain your physical strength if you exercise regularly, you can keep your brain power from deteriorating by providing daily stimulation for your brain.

In my neuroscience lab, I developed the exercises in this book in order to activate the largest regions of the brain. These brain health exercises increase the delivery of oxygen, blood, and various amino acids to the prefrontal cortex. The result is more neurons and neural connections, which are characteristics of a healthy brain.

Who is this book for?

  • Adults with the following symptoms:
    * Increasing forgetfulness
    * Difficulty remembering people's names, spelling words, or expressing thoughts. 

  • Adults who wish to work on the following:
    * Creativity
    * Memory skills
    * Communication skills
    * Slowing the mental effects of aging

How can you keep your brain healthy?

In order to maintain your physical health, you have to (1) exercise regularly, (2) eat healthily and (3) sleep well. In like manner, in order to keep your brain healthy, you need to (1) exercise your brain regularly, (2) eat healthily and (3) sleep well. As an adult, you are responsible for your own diet and sleep on a daily basis. This book is exclusively designed to help you get used to also training your brain everyday.

Simple calculations really work!

While browsing through this workbook, you may have noticed it consists only of simple calculations. Some of you may be wondering why an adult, who is intellectually active at work and at home, would need to do such elementary school-level math. Through my research I found that simple calculations activate the brain more effectively than any other activity. I also discovered that the best way to activate the largest regions of the brain was to solve these calculations quickly. That is why I have created the easy-to-solve problems you see in this workbook to help you Train Your Brain!

Calculation and oral reading exercises are the optimal training methods according to the latest brain research

My latest research proved that reading aloud, solving simple calculations, and writing activate the brain most effectively.

Brain training boosted the ability to remember by twenty percent

My research team carried out research with elementary school students. We counted how many words they could memorize within two minutes and found that, on average, they could memorize 8.3 words (the equivalent figure for adults is 12.2). When we conducted the same test after a two minute calculation exercise, the average word count remember increased to 9.8 and after two minutes of reading out loud the average increased to 10.1. Our results show that these exercises boosted the children's ability to remember by more than twenty percent.

The calculation and reading aloud exercises acted as a warm-up for the students, allowing them to perform better on the word memorization tests.

Simple calculation and oral reading exercises alleviated symptoms of dementia

My team also conducted an experiment with twelve dementia Alzheimer type patients. We gave our patients a ten minutes-a-day writing and oral reading exercise and a ten-minutes-a-day calculation exercise to be performed two to five days a week. Cognitive and prefrontal cortex function of non-participant subjects that did not do the calculation and oral reading exercises deteriorated during the six-month follow up. However, with participant subjects that did do the exercises, we succeeded in preventing deterioration of their cognitive function, as well as improving their prefrontal cortex function.

This is an exceptional achievement on a global scale -- rarely has the deterioration of the cognitive function of dementia Alzheimer type patients been slowed or diminished.

The above is an excerpt from the book Train Your Brain More: 60 Days to a Better Brain: Better Brainpower, Better Memory, Better Creativity by Dr. Ryuta Kawashima. The above excerpt is a digitally scanned reproduction of text from print. Although this excerpt has been proofread, occasional errors may appear due to the scanning process. Please refer to the finished book for accuracy.

Copyright © 2009 Dr. Ryuta Kawashima author of Train Your Brain More: 60 Days to a Better Brain: Better Brainpower, Better Memory, Better Creativity