It would seem that what I thought, that my being physically active post-injury, was good for my brain is true. The premise of my logic was that as the brain is a muscle, physical exercise would be good for it. It would strengthen the core elements of it, which would translate to improving its functionality.
A review from UQ’s School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences uncovered the benefit of exercise on a particular protein involved in brain re-organisation and re-learning following a neurological disorder, such as after a stroke.
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) proteins, found in the peripheral and central nervous systems, play an important role in brain development, plasticity and survival.
PhD candidate Christopher Mackay said the review discovered that exercise could positively affect BDNF in people with brain conditions.
“Increasing BDNF may contribute to the ability of brain cells to grow, change and rejuvenate, and a program of aerobic exercise may increase levels of BDNF in people with a neurological disorder,” Mr Mackay said.