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Start a Good Book

Reading is a pleasure — and it may help support brain health


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Quick Win

Decide what you’re in the mood for — a mystery? historical fiction? a memoir or biography? — and settle in for a read.

Try this today
  • Survey friends for their favorite books or look for recommendations online, and then go to a library or bookstore. Can’t decide? Try the first-paragraph test: Scan the opening lines and see if they grab you. 
  • Choose your book nook a comfortable spot in your home with good lighting. Spend a half hour getting lost in the story.
  • On repeat. Pick a daily time to devote to reading. First thing in the morning, with coffee? After dinner but before you get sleepy? Start a list of titles you’d like to check out.

Relaxation can come in many forms, one of which is curling up with a good book! And research suggests the benefits of reading may go beyond R&R. Some studies suggest that reading fiction can expand perspective and increase empathy, including a 2018 review of 14 studies published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. Reading might even protect brain health, according to a 14-year study of close to 2,000 people age 64 and older in Taiwan. That report, published in International Psychogeriatrics in 2020, linked more frequent reading with a lower risk of cognitive decline.  

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