How Can Cycling Boost Your Brain Function?

Cycling Boost Your Brain Function

When you are hitting your favorite trail or simply commuting with your bike, you are not only getting physical benefits. Recent studies have shown that cycling provides a wide range of mental benefits that go much beyond what meets the eye.

Cycling boosts our brain functionality, growth, and much more by allowing proper blood flow to the brain. Here is how it impacts your mental and psychological health:

Cycling Boost Brain

A Neural Fertilizer

As we pedal, we pump oxygen and nutrients into our brain and create rich capillary beds, increasing the brain’s capacity to grow. 

The area of the brain required to learn coordinated movement is called the cerebellum. Cycling activates additional nerve cells, boosting the production of BDNF, a substance that promotes the growth of new brain cells.

Cycling thus promotes brain activity in areas like the hippocampus, which is crucial for spatial navigation and memory formation. It floods our bodies with potent neurotransmitters, the same chemical substances anti-anxiety and anti-depressant drugs specifically target.

Elevated Mood

Engaging in regular cycling leads to a drop in Leptin hormone. This fat hormone signals our brain when the body has enough energy. Our body is urged to do more physical activities at low Leptin levels. 

Low levels of Leptin allow our body to be flooded with “happy hormones,” namely dopamine, anandamide, endorphins, and serotonin which allows us to keep our ride motivated and longer. This hormonal rush also reflects on your daily work routine for a productive and fruitful outcome.

The first step to being happier, more productive, and more optimistic about life is having a healthy and sound brain. Once your brain functions well, you can be more productive and self-aware. 

According to a survey, during the pandemic, commuters who switched from four to two-wheelers said it made them physically and mentally happier.

Enhancing Memory

An enhancement in memory is yet another great advantage of regular cycling. Regular cyclists often find that their judgment, learning, thinking, and coping skills remain sharp as they age. Mental cognition and memory decline with age.

Fortunately, cycling is vital in preserving brain memory, especially for the aged. Cycling boosts cognitive memory by producing two to three times as many proteins to create new brain cells.

Your brain’s blood vessels function better when they have a better supply of nutrients and oxygen. When you are road biking or going downhill, you improve your mental skills and sharpness as it all has to do with the “White Matter” in our brains.

Like a cerebral subway station, white matter is found beneath the brain surface. It links up various parts of the brain that involves in functionality.

Fights Depression and Anxiety

Depression is a common issue for people in recent times due to the pandemic’s aftermath. Exercise is a natural reliever of anxiety. The signs of muscle tension caused by anxiety can be reduced by cycling. 

A study indicates that people who are already diagnosed with depression benefit greatly from their health and mental stability due to various aerobic exercises like cycling.

Less than an hour of cycling produces a fatty acid called Anandamide, which regulates many functions in the human body, including stress. Even youngsters claim that cycling helps their thought processes. It promotes new thought patterns in a person that promote feelings of calm.

Regular riding helps you align your circadian rhythm and can lower stress hormone levels, making getting proper, deep sleep easier.

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