Health Update: Exercise Turns Off Brain Inflammation



Hello to one and all:

Here is some useful information regarding why it is important to keep moving and exercise regularly and consistently. As it turns out, exercise is an anti-inflammatory natural medicine with wonderful effects on brain health and aging. Exercise does this by balancing or regulating the brain’s immune cells called microglia. These immune cells release a chemical messenger called cytokines which can be either pro or anti-inflammatory. Healthy signaling keeps the anti-inflammatory chemistry revved up, reduces brain inflammation, and helps the synapses function optimally. Too many pro-inflammatory cytokines can create neurodegeneration. Symptoms of brain inflammation include brain fog, anxiety, depression, memory loss, balance disorders, migraine and other headaches, vertigo, gut issues and more:

Accumulating evidence indicates that exercise can enhance brain function and attenuate neurodegeneration. Besides improving neuroplasticity by altering the synaptic structure and function in various brain regions, exercise also modulates multiple systems that are known to regulate neuroinflammation and glial activation. Activated microglia and several pro-inflammatory cytokines play active roles in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.” 

Current literature states that low-intensity exercise is sufficient to induce an anti-microglial activation effect by regulating the expressions of various factors. Some of these factors (e.g., myokines) can directly inhibit microglial activation via assorted mechanisms that subsequently prevent neuroinflammation in the CNS. Considerable evidence also suggests that exercise may inhibit microglial activation by downregulation of the levels of pro-inflammatory factors.”

Bottom Line: Along with exercise, there are other things you can do to decrease brain inflammation such as: sauna; intermittent fasting; calorie reduction; adequate sleep; certain supplements, especially Omega-3 fatty acids, luteolin and curcumin; clean organic pesticide free foods; keeping your blood sugar under optimal control; gut and microbiome health such as fermented foods, probiotics, healthy fiber rich foods; good oral and dental health;  etc.

To reduce any of the signs of brain inflammation requires (in my experience) that ALL of the possible factors that drive inflammation in your brain or body need to be evaluated and balanced and here is a good way to start: take a yoga class 2 to 3 x per week and get moving!


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