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The middle-aged mind – clearing the clouds

Posted Sep 30 2010 3:26am

An interesting new book on the middle-aged mind and memory popped on to our RSS reader today.

Reviewed on Menopause – The Blog , Barbara Strauch’s book The Secret Life of the Grown-Up Brain: The Surprising Talents of the Middle-Aged Mind gives hope to mid-life women who can’t remember why they went upstairs or where they left their keys…

Strauch, former deputy health editor at the New York Times, explains that although the way our brains operate does change with time, partly due to lack of estrogen, there’s no such thing as the ‘mid-life crisis’.

In fact the 40+ brain functions well – the problem lies more in the way we live, with multiple demands on our time and memories. We may find it harder to concentrate because we’re less able to ignore the ‘daydreaming’ function of our minds. Maybe that’s not such a bad thing, and can allow us to think creatively and come up with new ideas.

Either way, Strauch’s book is reassuring – it is good to know that the mature mind can function at a high level, and that if we simplify our lives and ease the pressures on ourselves, we stand to benefit mentally as well as physically.

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