A new study provides insights into the biochemical mechanisms by which Tai Chi-- a mind-body exercise--may provide both physical and psychological benefits. The study is published in Journal of Neuroimaging.
Using magnetic resonance spectroscopy, a non-invasive method of measuring brain and muscle chemistry using MRI machines, tests conducted in 6 older adults enrolled in a 12-week Tai Chi
program revealed significant increases in a marker of neuronal health in the brain and significantly improved recovery rates of a metabolite involved in energy production in leg muscles.
‘Tai chi, a mind-body exercise, improves neuronal health and energy production in the muscles.’
"The benefits of Tai Chi have been well known anecdotally; however recent research such as our study can quantify these improvements using objective measures," said senior author Dr. Alexander Lin, of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School.