Project Body Smart | Reading Is Still Fundamental


Reading Is Still Fundamental

Even Later in Life

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” — Dr. Seuss

That might’ve been written for children, but it’s just as true for adults at any age.

And today, with social distancing leaving mature people more vulnerable to social isolation and depression, reading is an important part of self-care and wellness.

Feeling trapped at home? Lost in your own thoughts? Lonely for brilliant discussions, captivating characters, and the transforming power of a well-told tale?

Take “A Walk in the Woods” to explore the Appalachian Trail. Brush up on “The Art of Fielding” if you’re missing baseball. Tackle a classic door-stopper like “War and Peace” or “Madame Bovary.” Relax while exploring poetry from another country.

Reading has powerful cognitive benefits for all of us later in life, in addition to the entertainment and artistic value.

  • It exercises memory and strengthens brain function.
  • It improves our ability to make decisions.
  • It can delay Alzheimer’s and dementia.
  • Getting lost in a book reduces stress, lowering the heart rate and muscle tension.
  • Taking a book to bed helps us fall asleep better than watching TV or looking at an electronic device.

Reading also leads to opportunities for social interaction via the phone or computer.

Do you have books on the shelf you’ve been meaning to get to someday? Do you want to revisit an old favorite? Or explore a historical figure’s biography?

Belong to a book club? Share with your community and start communicating digitally.

Have book selections you recommend? Share them in the comments.

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