Brain Books

Brain Books for the Boomer sounds like a blog doesn't it? There are a ton of great brain books out there for our Boomer brains. I began to get curious about what was happening in this field when I noticed that I was beginning to lose words in my counseling practice, which frightened me.

The first thought is of course that I am headed to Alzheimer's and there is no get out Alzheimer's card in the game of life, so my more rational side said, "Well, let's see what is out there before jumping off a cliff" and what I began to discover is that my word recall issue is a common sign of the changes that older brains exhibit and it is normal, so I felt a little less anxiety, well actually a lot less anxiety, but you can make that anxiety worse anytime you want, so I kept looking, and came across a book called The Brain That Changes Itself, by Norman Doidge, M.D. and purchased it dreading that it would be some kind of medical text, with no clear cut steps available to follow for easing my Boomer fear.

And what a surprise I was in for. Doidge writes extensively about newly discovered capacities of the human brain like neurogenesis and neuroplasticity. Neurogenesis is the growth of new brain cells daily, which no one knew that we were doing until about ten-fifteen years ago, and neuroplasticity is the word used to describe how malleable the human brain is. In other words, everytime I learn something new, neurons form new connections, and those connections, if they are reinforced, are kept available for something like word recall in the Boomer brain.

Doidge also writes about a number of other developments that are very encouraging for treatments of stroke, or autism, for example.

And there are a number of other books that I found as a result of the Bibliography in Doidge's book, and my online search.

Below are links to books that I have read, which have been very helpful in my own brainfitness work, with a little commentary. Believe me, this is not an all inclusive list either.

In fact, the first book I am mentioning can be purchased in either hard copy or e-book, and the e-book allows you to purchase a chapter if that is all you want. Brainfit for Life by Simon Evans,Ph.D. and Paul Burghardt,Ph.D. is an excellent overview of the what the brain fitness folks are calling the Pillars of Brain Fitness, and if I take care of the pillars, I am living a lifestyle that makes neurogenesis and neuroplasticity much more possible.

Evans and Burghardt are neuroscientists at the University of Michigan, and they write for us though, so there is a minimum of jargon.

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