Memory exercises performed for just 12 minutes a day for 8 consecutive weeks have proven to keep the brain sharp and can reverse memory loss in those at risk for developing alzheimers. The memory exercise called Kirtan Kriya has been researched and tested, and has proven to be beneficial to the people at risk, as well as their caregivers.
According to Dr. Dharma Singh Khalsa, medical director of the Alzheimer's Research and Prevention Foundation, Kirtan Kriya (pronounced "Keertun Kreea"), is a type of meditation derived from the Kundalini yoga tradition, which has been practiced for thousands of years.
This meditation is often referred to as a singing exercise, and it involves singing the primal sounds "Saa", "Taa", "Naa" and "Maa", along with repetitive finger and thumb movements, or mudras.
As a result of its demonstrated mental health benefits, Kirtan Kriya has been vigorously studied by the Alzheimer's Research & Prevention Foundation (ARPF) in concert with scientists from top medical schools such as UCLA, USCF, and the University of Pennsylvania, and findings have been published in prestigious medical journals such as the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and The Journal of Alzheimer's Disease. "Kirtan Kriya is scientifically proven to boost blood flow to critical brain areas and increase mental energy, sharpen concentration and improve focus," explains Dharma, "As a result of the extraordinary findings of these studies, Kirtan Kriya has been endorsed by the ARPF as a way to prevent Alzheimer's disease."
"The current recommendation for practicing Kirtan Kriya was developed by combining thousands of years of ancient techniques with millions of dollars of scientific study," says Dharma. "The number one fear among adults is losing their mental faculties. It is important that people understand that by taking preventative measures and making lifestyle changes, such as incorporating Kirtan Kriya exercises into a daily routine, we can reduce the number of people developing Alzheimer's by as much as 50 percent," continues Dharma.
It is believed that the placement of the tongue on the roof of the mouth while carrying out Kirtan Kriya chanting sounds stimulates 84 acupuncture points on the upper palate, causing a beneficial biochemical transformation in the brain. Additionally, research has revealed that utilizing the fingertip position in conjunction with the sounds enhances blood flow to particular areas in the motor-sensory part of the brain. The exercise increases brain blood flow to critically important areas and promotes greater attention, concentration, focus, improved short term memory, and better mood.
"Our research revealed a reduction in inflammation, less depression and a 44 percent increase in the enzyme known as telomerase, which is a breakthrough anti-aging discovery," explains Dharma. "Essentially when you have more telomerase, you live longer in better health and with an improved memory."