“A bout of exercise is like taking a little bit of Prozac and a little bit of Ritalin.”
– Dr. John Ratey
And Dr. Ratey ought to know! The illustrious neuropsychiatrist from Harvard Medical School is the author with Dr. Ned Hallowell of the “Driven to Distraction” series and is one of the world’s leading authorities on the brain-fitness connection!
Exercise elevates your mood – which antidepressants such as Prozac do – and improves attention and concentration – which Ritalin does.
More and more professionals are recommending exercise as a treatment for mood and attention-related challenges such as ADHD, depression, bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia.
Benefits of Exercise
Physical activity turns our brains on! Our brains are more active during exercise than any other activity we engage in. Exercise is natural way to trigger the brain chemicals so helpful in managing the symptoms of ADHD.
The executive area of the brain – the part that controls activities that people with ADHD often find challenging such as planning, prioritizing, breaking down tasks into manageable steps, organization, memory, mood, motivation and follow through – is switched on during exercise, and the effects last for some time after we stop moving.
Physical activity keeps our brains young and perky by slowing down the process of degeneration that can result in dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It improves our memory and helps our brain learn new habits, routines, and facts. Exercise promotes sleep and is a natural depression fighter.
Exercise makes your brain better in so many ways, so it’s a “no-brainer” decision to find ways to work more physical activity into your day!