Is Doing Housework Good for Your Brain?


It could be time to rethink our aversion to housecleaning.

Analyzing self-reported information from 489 adults ages 21 to 90, Singapore Institute of Know-how affiliate professor Shiou Liang Wee, PhD, and his analysis group concluded that the extra housekeeping you do, the higher your mind and physique function — particularly as you get older.

“Amongst older adults, housekeeping is related to larger cognitive perform, particularly in consideration and reminiscence,” the researchers notice in BMJ Open. “Home tasks PA (bodily exercise) is positively related to purposeful well being amongst community-dwelling older adults, unbiased of recreation and different nonrecreational PAs.”

Surprisingly, about two-thirds of the older research individuals met their advisable quota of bodily exercise just by tidying up the home frequently. And that effort — even other than any train routine — can result in a decrease danger of falls and a normal enchancment in on a regular basis mobility. It’s a sensible and purposeful approach to construct power and resilience.

On the cognitive entrance, the researchers notice, extra intense home chores (cleansing home windows, portray, floor-washing, vacuuming) make a distinction in particular areas. Those that reported doing such “heavy” cleansing, as an example, produced larger scores on exams measuring consideration span than their less-ambitious counterparts, who scored larger on short-term-memory assessments.

It’s an observational research, so it doesn’t ascribe any trigger and impact, however the findings are according to earlier analysis on cardio train and mind well being in older adults. And there are many research demonstrating the salutary results of train on mobility as we age.

“These outcomes,” the researchers conclude, “collectively recommend that the upper cognition, bodily, and sensorimotor features associated to heavy housekeeping actions may plausibly be related to decrease physiological fall danger amongst community-dwelling older adults.”

So, subsequent time you’re confronted with a military of mud bunnies, a sink filled with soiled dishes, and a cringeworthy stovetop, keep in mind that the hassle you expend whereas tidying up might produce not solely a cleaner home however a more healthy you.

This text initially appeared as “The Home tasks & Well being Connection” within the June 2022 problem of Expertise Life.