Move the Body, Heal the Mind: ask me anything!
How is this book unique?
Move the Body, Heal the Mind is a unique self-help guide on the neuroscience of exercise that features:
Revolutionary research from my NeuroFit Lab and others from around the world.
A personal journey where I used exercise to heal my own mind.
Science-based workouts that deliver a how-to guide on putting the research into action.
Discover powerful neurochemicals like the resiliency factor Neuropeptide Y (NPY) that protects the brain from trauma and try the Fear Buster Workout to maximize NPY while also providing “exposure therapy” to soothe anxiety.
Learn new things about misunderstood compounds like lactate, a by-product produced by hard-working muscles. Many fitness instructors talk about “flushing out lactate from the muscles” as if lactate is a bad thing that we need to get rid of. But the latest research shows that lactate may be one of the most important promoters of brain health. It may even prevent dementia! I designed the Wellness Walk Plus Workout to boost lactate levels in your daily walk.
Develop a greater appreciation for short bursts of movement that activate the prefrontal cortex to enhance your focus and creativity. Use the Neuro Fix Workout — a quick 4-minute high-intensity workout, to wake up your brain for greater productivity.
Why did you write this book?
As a scientist, I want my research to have a meaningful impact on the world and I know that the knowledge I have can help the hundreds of millions of people who suffer from mental illness worldwide.
Unfortunately, most people with mental illness don’t seek professional help. Why? Because of stigma. My book offers a much-needed self-help resource for people suffering with mental illness. Throughout the book I explain the neuroscience of mental illness in the hopes of destigmatizing it. And I provide a way out of suffering with inclusive workouts that require no specialized training or equipment.
What is the most important message from the book that you hope readers take away?
I want people to know that they are not alone in their suffering (or in their struggles to stay active). It’s not your fault, but faulty wiring of the brain, and you can fix that faulty wiring with exercise. Moving the body heals the mind. Exercise gives the brain the essential nutrients it needs to thrive. And once the brain is healthy, it becomes easier for you to stay healthy. It’s a virtuous cycle!
What surprised you while writing this book?
Writing a book requires more stamina than completing an Ironman. Fortunately, the perseverance I built up from my years of triathlon training gave me the stick-to-itiveness I needed to see this book all the way through to the end.
Jennifer Heisz, PhD
Canada Research Chair in Brain Health & Aging | Associate Professor, Department of Kinesiology, McMaster University
Ivor Wynn Centre, 206 | 1280 Main Street West | Hamilton ON L8S 4L8 Canada
The information provided here is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to replace advice from your health care provider.
Jennifer Heisz, PhD
Canada Research Chair in Brain Health & Aging Associate Professor, Department of Kinesiology, McMaster University, Ivor Wynn Centre, 206
1280 Main Street West, Hamilton ON L8S 4L8 Canada