Muscle Up Your Memory
Muscle and Fitness Hers South Africa|May 2021
Hitting the weights may also help strengthen your recall, according to a study from Georgia Institute of Technology. Researchers found doing an intense 20-minute weight routine enhanced long-term memory by about 10%.

“We think the hormones released as part of the body’s response to strength training lead to the improvement in memory,” says study author Lisa Weinberg. “Best of all, it doesn’t have to be a long workout—even a relatively short one had an effect.” Although this study tested participants who exercisedonly once, other research (including longterm intervention studies) suggest that more is better, so keep up your regular workouts to maximize results. —Diana Kelly

The Hidden Danger of Winter Weight Gain

Those few pounds you put on over the holidays might be doing more harm than you think. A new study found even a small amount of extra weight can raise blood pressure levels and affect cardiovascular health. The study, presented at the most recent American Heart Association’s High Blood Pressure Research Scientific Sessions, showed that even a 5% increase in body weight due to excess eating leads to a 4mmHg increase in blood pressure in lean, healthy individuals. (For a 130-pound woman, a 5% increase in body weight would be 6.5 pounds.) The increase in blood pressure was specifically related to increments in deep belly (visceral) fat. “Even a few extra pounds can contribute to an increase in blood pressure if the fat accumulated is predominantly inside the abdomen,” says lead author Naima Covassin, Ph.D., a research fellow at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. —DK

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