Do fitness dads have smarter kids?24.05.2022
There is a lot of scientific evidence that sports are good not only for the body, but also for the brain. Recent studies by German scientists have confirmed that physical activity has a positive effect on brain processes, and also changes the composition of sperm, which can affect the mental abilities and skills of offspring. In addition, these benefits can be passed on to children even if the father did not play sports before adulthood.
Why is this happening? Physical activity improves the functioning of the part of the brain that is responsible for memory and learning. Research has also shown that exercise, like other aspects of lifestyle, affects how genes work, and these changes can be passed on to children.
To confirm their hypothesis that sports dads have smarter children, researchers at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Göttingen, Germany, conducted experiments on mice.
They assembled a large group of genetically identical male mice. Some of them led a passive lifestyle, while others lived in cages equipped with wheels and other devices to stimulate the body and brain.
According to the experiment, since the mice were genetically identical, any differences in their bodies and behavior that developed later must have been the result of lifestyle. The scientists found that active mice developed stronger neural connections in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for memory and learning.
Moreover, when some of the “active” mice had offspring with mothers from the “passive group”, their offspring from birth had stronger neural connections in the brain than those of babies born to “homebody fathers.” Children of “athletes” were more trainable and had a better memory.
The researchers studied the composition of paternal sperm and found that it was all about microRNAs – tiny molecules that are involved in internal changes in genes. The scientists found that after the onset of active life in male mice, the levels of two specific miRNAs increased not only in their brains, but also in their sperm.
Based on the data obtained, German researchers concluded that the physical activity of fathers has a positive effect on the mental abilities of the offspring, and it does not matter whether we are talking about animals or people.
We are sure that the children of these star dads, leading a very active lifestyle, will confirm the theory of scientists in practice!
Dwayne Johnson and newborn Tiana Gia Johnson
Chris Hemsworth training with a child
Jensen Ackles with daughter Justice J Ackles
David Beckham with son Brooklyn Beckham
Photos for the announcement: Instagram, Hellomagazine, Popsugar