(Mirror Daily, United States) – Reading is healthy for the mind and body, due to the fact that it not only improves brain functions, but it also relieves stress. So if you have a library card and a gym membership one sitting in your wallet, collecting dust, you might want to use the first one. Of course, a balanced lifestyle dictates in favor of the latter, too, but reading is the sport of the brain.
Brewing up a nice cup of tea, cozying up on the comfy chair or in the corner of a couch and opening up a good book is a perfect scenario for a lot of people. And it’s not just a relaxing way to spend an afternoon, according to various research, reading is healthy for the mind and the body.
Apart from expanding your knowledge and escaping into wondrous worlds, picking the minds of famous authors while playing made-up games or exploring the nine circles of Hell, there are several physical benefits of burying yourself in an excellent book.
Reading Reduced Stress
Reading a good book (and by good book we understand any work of fiction or non-fiction that is appealing to the reader) for more than six minutes can reduce the levels of stress with 68 percent.
Researchers at the Sussex University discovered that a person than engages in reading is able to shake off stress much quicker than a person who decides to walk it off or rock it off.
Reading Improves Your Memory
The director and president of the Haskins Laboratories at Yale, Ken Pugh, discovered that reading engages different parts of the human brain. When browsing the pages of a book, we wire up associative learning areas, as well as language, vision and a couple more.
This means that reading a book is as good for the brain as Dwayne Johnson’s regime is for his brick-tight muscles. Furthermore, researchers at the University of Chicago discovered a link between reading and slower memory decline rates.
Reading Makes You More Empathic
Researchers at Emory University found that the memory center is not the only part of the brain that we “work out” while reading.
It seems that reading makes you more empathic with other people because fiction allows you to develop and train your imagination to work better.
Re-Reading Is Therapeutic
All voracious readers have a book that they turn to whenever they have the blues or feel like life is not making sense anymore.
And there is a scientific explanation for that. It seems that re-reading a book at different times in a person’s life leads to a beneficial type of self-reflection. So why spend money on therapists when you can pick up that worn out copy of *insert favorite book title here*?
Reading Increases the Attention Span
Children benefit from this the most. Because stories have a traditional frame, it allows them to better grasp the notion of order. They learn to follow the natural steps of a situation, and they train their brains to focus on something for a longer period of time.
So next time you have some spare time to kill, just pick up a book. Reading is healthy for the mind and body and as Stephen King said,
““Books are the perfect entertainment: no commercials, no batteries, hours of enjoyment for each dollar spent. What I wonder is why everybody doesn’t carry a book around for those inevitable dead spots in life.”’
Image source: www.pixabay.com