Study: Walking and biking may boost an aging brain

Getting outside for a walk or bike ride could boost your brain power.

A new clinical trial focusing on older adults with milder problems with memory and thinking skills found that six months of moderate exercise, such as walking and biking, turned some of those issues around.

Specifically, exercisers saw improvements in their executive function, which is the brain's ability to pay attention, regulate behavior, get organized and achieve goals, according to the research, which was published in the journal Neurology. Those who also made some healthy diet changes showed slightly bigger gains.

The study's lead researcher said the effect was equivalent to shaving about nine years from their brain age.

Experts say the findings support the general concept that a healthy lifestyle can help protect the brain as you age.