Sunday, May 6, 2012

Good Advice for Understanding and Maintaining the Aging Brain

This book has two purposes: describing what the brain is like and giving suggestions for how to keep it healthy. The first parts of the book contain basic information on brain structure and function. If you're unfamiliar with how the brain is organized this is fairly simple to read and gives good information. The second part offers suggestions, supported by research, about keeping your brain functioning at an optimal level. This part is easier to follow and generally mirrors current information on how to keep your body healthy: exercise, nutrition, socializing, and attitude. Unfortunately, much of the research cited involves fruit flies and rats which may cause non-scientists to lose interest.

I enjoyed the book. I found information that I wasn't familiar with, like the correlation between dementia and diabetes. I was also fascinated by the chapter on Alzheimer's disease. While it isn't a particularly detailed medical account, it can provide a substantial amount of information for the general reader.

I recommend this book for anyone wanting to learn more about the aging brain. It isn't the definitive work, but it provides good information for the general reader and is a good place to start. As with all scientific information, it's always good to go to other references to educate yourself about particular points.

I reviewed this book for the Amazon Vine Program: The Scientific American Healthy Aging Brain by Judith Horstman