Patients who come to this office know well the exercise sermon both doctors preach. Exercise is one of the key foundational elements of general health and also allergic/immunologic health. New research is adding cognitive health to the list of benefits.
Recent journal articles in the Journal of Cellular Physiology and in Journal of Nature Metabolism contain new data on the fact that exercise leads to the production of a hormone irisin. It has been known for some time that irisin transforms white fat cells (which store fat) into brown fat cells (which burn fat) and also improves insulin resistance (the cause of Type II diabetes).
Now it seems that irisin enhances cognition in humans and in experimental mice. Several experiments in mice were very compelling. In one experiment either injecting irisin into mouse brains or increasing irisin production via gene therapy led to marked improvement in cognitive function in otherwise normal mice. Then in two established mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease increasing irisin restored lost cognition. It did so by reducing neuro inflammation which is the cause of Alzheimer’s disease.