Just put one foot in front of the other and you’ll boost your brain at the same time.
That’s the conclusion of a small study that found the impact of a foot while walking sends pressure waves through the arteries that increases blood supply to the brain. “New data now strongly suggest that brain blood flow is very dynamic,” said researcher Ernest Greene and his colleagues at New Mexico Highlands University.
Table of Contents
How Exercise Regulates Circulation to the Brain
Blood supply to the brain was once considered an involuntary action that wasn’t affected by exercise or changes in blood pressure. Previous research has shown, however, that the foot’s impact while running is associated with backward-flowing waves in the arteries that help regulate circulation to the brain. These waves are in sync with the runner’s heart rate and stride, the study authors explained.
For the new study, scientists examined the effects of walking, which involves a lighter foot impact than running.
Using ultrasound technology, they measured the carotid-artery diameter and blood velocity waves of 12 healthy young adults to calculate the blood flow to their brains as they walked at a steady pace. The participants were also assessed at rest.
The study showed that walking results in a significant increase in blood flow to the brain. The boost in blood flow isn’t as dramatic as with running, but it’s more notable than that seen with biking, which doesn’t involve any foot impact, the study authors said.
“What is surprising is that it took so long for us to finally measure these obvious hydraulic effects on cerebral blood flow,” said Greene, the study’s first author. “There is an optimizing rhythm between brain blood flow and ambulating [walking]. Stride rates and their foot impacts are within the range of our normal heart rates [about 120/minute] when we are briskly moving along,” Greene said in a news release from the American Physiological Society.
The study’s findings were expected to be presented Monday at the society’s annual meeting, in Chicago. Results of studies presented at meetings are usually considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.
SOURCE: American Physiological Society, news release, April 24, 2017
The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic and spinal injuries and conditions. To discuss options on the subject matter, please feel free to ask Dr. Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .
Additional Topics: What is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic care is an well-known, alternative treatment option utilized to prevent, diagnose and treat a variety of injuries and conditions associated with the spine, primarily subluxations or spinal misalignments. Chiropractic focuses on restoring and maintaining the overall health and wellness of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. Through the use of spinal adjustments and manual manipulations, a chiropractor, or doctor of chiropractic, can carefully re-align the spine, improving a patientâ€™s strength, mobility and flexibility.
.video-containerposition: relative; padding-bottom: 63%; padding-top: 35px; height: 0; overflow: hidden;.video-container iframeposition: absolute; top:0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; border: none; max-width:100%!important;
The information herein on "Walking Increases Blood Supply to the Brain" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
Our information scope is limited to Chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, contributing etiological viscerosomatic disturbances within clinical presentations, associated somatovisceral reflex clinical dynamics, subluxation complexes, sensitive health issues, and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions.
We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from various disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.
Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and directly or indirectly support our clinical scope of practice.*
Our office has reasonably attempted to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.
We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez, DC, or contact us at 915-850-0900.
We are here to help you and your family.
Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, RN* CIFM*, IFMCP*, ATN*, CCST
My Digital Business Card