Amber Elizabeth – brains, body and a great personality

Better body, better brain.

That’s what the research is saying. We kind of knew it, but now a number of studies have shown that people who exercise regularly actually learn faster, remember more, think clearer and are less prone to depression and cognitive decline. So stop with the crossword puzzles and get on that treadmill and be smarter, live longer. Just slip into some mind-numbing exercise and presto, you’re on your way.

For serious, female fitness buffs, the magazine Oxygen will give you a lot of information and ideas about health, fitness and food. For men, Oxygen’s October cover girl, Amber Elizabeth  is worth emulating – and it’s her mind, not her body that you will be interested in.

Back to exercise. Of course, we know that we should eat right too: More veggies, fruit, fish and a whole lot less gluten. Yes, less gluten is the new news. The evidence is in and the gluten-free rush is on. Most supermarkets and restaurants (the smart ones, like Kelseys) are now catering to people on gluten-free diets. If you eliminate most of the gluten from your diet, you will lose weight, clean out your system, have more energy and be healthier. And it’s easy. I didn’t need to lose much weight but lost 16 pounds without even trying. But that’s another story, this one is about getting smarter.

Carl Cotman, director of the Institute for Brain Aging and Dementia at the University of California in Irvine says that exercise acts as a mild stressor and spurs protective benefits associated with calorie restriction and the release of brain-building growth factors. It’s a


brain chemistry thing. Cotman says, “The faster you move the greater the electrical activity, which triggers a release of chemicals called growth factors. They make neurons stronger, healthier and improve their ability to learn. It improves our ability to think, learn and remember.”

Jane Fonda - after all that exercise she's looking great and is bright as hell.

How much exercise will make you smarter? And better looking? Well, although Jane Fonda looks great at age seventy-something, you don’t have to dust off all her old CDs that you bought with the best of intentions because Cotman says, “Every other day is just as good as daily exercise, as long as you do it for at least a half-hour.”

Hey, here’s an idea for all you singles. Think about the improvement in the odds for dating services and blind dates. You no longer have to worry about that age-old yellow flag, “…well, she/he has a great personality.” Just be armed with a few intelligence-testing questions like: What’s the capital of Myanmar? Who discovered Darwin’s theory before Darwin? If you get the answers (Naypyidaw and Alfred Russel Wallace, respectively), you know there’s a high probability that he or she is intelligent and therefore has a great bod. Maybe? Or ask Amber Elizabeth. Or Jane – after you get off the treadmill.