Books Make You Smarter – Myth or Reality?


Girl Reading
 If you are book lover you will actually agree that diving into a great novel is an experience that can make the brain come alive with emotions and imagery and even turn on the senses. Check these beneficial tips that reading brings to your brain.

We make photos in our minds, even without being prompted

Reading books and other materials with vivid imagery is not only amusing, it also allows you to create worlds in your own mind. But did you know that this happens even if you don’t promote it to? Researchers found that visual imagery is automatic. Peoples are able to identify photos of objects faster if they just read a sentence that describes the object visually, suggesting that when you read a sentence, you automatically bring up pictures of objects in your mind.

Spoken word can put the brain in work- mode

People are quick to critic audio books for being sub-par reading experience, but studies have shown that the act of listening to a story can light up your brain. When you are told a story, not only are language processing parts of your brain activated, experiential parts of your brain come alive as well. When you hear about food your sensory cortex stimulates, while motion activates the cortex responsible for actions. And while you are thinking that this is limited only to audio books or reading, scientists insist that the brain is exposed to narratives all day long. In fact, researchers tell personal stories and gossip make up 70% of your daily conversations. So go ahead, listen to your friend’s long and boring stories about their vacation or listen to an audio book. It is a good exercise for your brain.


Reading about experiences is nearly the same as living it

When you read, your brain does not make a real distinction between reading about an experience and living it. No matter if you read or experience something, it will stimulate the same neurological regions. Novels are able to enter into your feelings and thoughts. It seems that reading is the original virtual reality experience at least for your brain.

Different patterns are created in the brain by different styles of reading

Any kind of reading provides stimulation for your brain, but different types of reading create different experiences with various benefits. One university researchers have found that close literary reading in particular gives the brain a workout in multiple complex cognitive functions, meanwhile pleasure reading increases blood flow to different areas of the brain. They concluded that reading a novel for literary study and thinking about its value is an effective brain exercise, more than pleasure of reading alone.

New languages can boost your brain

Do you want to really give your brain an exercise? Pick up a foreign language novel. Researchers tested students groups. The language students experienced brain growth in both the cerebral cortex and the hippocampus with various levels of brain growth according to the amount of effort and learning students experienced in that period of time.

Old Books
 Story structure encourages the brain to think in sequence, expanding attention spans

Every story has a beginning, middle and end which is a positive thing for your brain. With this structure, your brain is encouraged to think in sequence, linking effect and cause. The more you read your brain is more able to adapt to this chain of thinking. Neuroscientists suggest parents to take this knowledge and use it for children by reading to them as much as possible. Doing so will instill story structure in young minds while the brain has more plasticity and the capacity to expand their attention span.

Reading changes the brain structure in a good way

Not everyone is born as a reader. Poor readers may not truly understand the joy of literature, but they could be trained to become better. And during this training, their brain actually changes. Scientists discovered that daily reading increases the volume of white matter in the language area of the brain. Further, they showed that brain structure can be improved with this making it. That is why it is important to adopt a healthy love of reading.

Deep reading makes us more empathetic

It feels great to lose yourself in reading and it can even physically change your brain. People enjoy deep reading that allows same feelings the characters in a story feel. In turn this makes you more empathetic to people in real life, becoming more alert and aware to others lives.