Exercise causes the release of various chemicals in the brain. The more vigorous the workout, the higher the rate these chemicals are released. Each chemical, formally known as a neurotransmitter, has a specific function to prevent or manage Alzheimer’s symptoms.
One essential neurotransmitter is dopamine, which affects how individuals feel pleasure. More importantly, it regulates many of the body’s functions, including a few related to Alzheimer’s symptoms. Mood, attention, learning, and working memory are all managed by dopamine. Higher levels of this chemical could improve such functions, reducing the risk of cognitive decline.
Physical activity also releases endorphins and endocannabinoids. Endorphins increase pleasure and reduce pain, while endocannabinoids are responsible for the calm euphoria experienced during a vigorous workout.
Though previously thought to perform separately, these neurotransmitters work together to improve the joy one feels during exercise. Endocannabinoids also increase dopamine levels, so are essential for boosting brain health.