I ran across some interesting research the other day that I wanted to take a few moments to share here. For years scientists have known that giving mice “enriched” environments makes the mice smarter. They would put in colorful toys, tunnels, exercise wheels, etc. and mice who lived in the “enriched” environments performed better on tests than the mice in the non-enriched cages. Finally some scientists started trying to figure out exactly what it was in the enriched environment’s was making the mice smart.
It turned out it wasn’t the colorful balls or toys. it all came down to the exercise wheel. Even though the mice loved the toys the thing that made them smart was running on the wheel. The intelligence followed the exercise wheel–not the toys.
This has some interesting implications for people who want to perform at their peak mental capabilities. Maybe exercise is the one of the best ways to invest your time in getting smarter.