Mental Health Monday: Brain HQ

This morning I read a short article in the August 8 issue of Time Magazine that is intriguing. It’s a health piece in their “The View” section, this one on longevity:


“Health: Can brain training protect you from dementia? New evidence is promising” by Alice Park. (I couldn’t find an online link to the article, but here are more pieces by Park in Time.)


Park writes about a study at the University of South Florida that tracked 3,000 healthy older people ten years after giving them a five-week training program. Well, one of the randomized groups did the computerized program focusing on processing speed. And ten years later? That group saw a 33% reduction in the amount of dementia or cognitive impairment compared to the other groups, who received different or no training.


A researcher at the University of Alabama created the program, which was later updated to an exercise called the Double Decision, which is now available as a smartphone app called BrainHQ. It costs $96 for a one-year subscription. I’m considering downloading it and giving it a try. Jerri Edwards, who led the study at South Florida, says, “I think everyone over 50 should start doing it.” I might give it a try….