Source | www.ccl.org
If you designed a lifestyle that’s the antithesis of good cognitive function and long-term brain health, the life of an average executive would come pretty close.
Sharon McDowell-Larsen is an exercise physiologist who is in charge of the Fitness for Leadership portion of our course for senior executives, Leadership at the Peak.
“The brain is the seat of intelligence, emotion, and memory, and it initiates movements and behaviors,” McDowell-Larsen explained. “But we’re prone to treating our brains like pieces of junk.”
Lack of sleep, poor dietary habits, stress, lack of regular exercise, and smoking can all contribute to worsened cognitive performance — today, tomorrow, next week — and brain health in the long term.
In fact, the same factors that increase our risk for heart attacks — elevated cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity — have also been shown to increase risk for dementia, mild cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer’s disease.
What can you do? In her white paper, The Care and Feeding of the Leader’s Brain, McDowell-Larsen draws on many research streams and shares findings from our database of thousands of senior leaders.