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When twins were tested 10 years apart, the ones with strong legs had young brains. Doing squats may help your brain stay healthy for a long time, scientists claim.

Besides the obvious and previously known benefits of exercising, like having a rocking body or better stamina and cardiovascular health, scientists now claim it is good for above-the-neck health too. The study was conducted at King's College in Britain during the last 10 years. This research included 324 British female twins between the ages of 43 and 73. Their learning abilities and their memory and thinking patterns were tested at the beginning of the study, and again in the end. The scientists have concluded that strong legs can be linked to healthier and slower brain aging.

Women who had stronger legs at the beginning of the research preserved their mental capacity better than their twin sisters and had less age-related changes in the brain.

The scientists are proud of this finding because twins are the most relevant and useful measurement since they share so many biological factors, from genetics to early life, and their comparison is much more valuable than comparing two random people.

The correlation and mechanisms behind this discovery are still not clear, but there are several possible explanations. Exercising reduces stress and improves blood circulation to the brain, and keeps you mentally engaged – you have to concentrate a lot.When you work out, whether it is running, weightlifting or just walking around, things are going on around you. It keeps you mentally engaged, which doesn't happen if you are simply sitting on the couch.

A regular brisk walk around the neighborhood is helpful enough to maintain proper brain function as we age. It is undeniable these findings are extremely important for the future of medicine, but since we don't have the exact causal relationship, and it is not yet clear whether the same results apply to men too, further research is needed.

How come the have studied the connection between brain and lower body, why not arms, or abs?

The largest muscles are located in the lower part of the body. The gluteal muscles, commonly known as buttock muscles – consist of three muscle groups: the gluteus minimus, medius and maximus – and together they make up one of the strongest muscle groups. This region is extremely important in human structure since it helps rotate and extend the hips and support us while we stand. It also helps to battle gravity when climbing the stairs.

The longest muscle is called Sartorius, and it is the one running down the whole length of the thigh, between pelvis and the knee, responsible for hip and knee flexion. The one muscle able to pull with the greatest force is the Soleus, located under calf muscle. This little wonder prevents us from falling backwards while standing up. It is essential for walking, running or dancing.

So, if some of the strongest muscles are located in the lower body, there is no wonder why health of this area has been proven to have such a great impact on the brain.
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