Don't believe me? Let's ask the experts.
ABC News is reporting that scientists are using some of their most sophisticated tools to peer inside the human brain to see what happens when we engage in the process of reading, and they are finding a number of surprises:
What? Read a novel and enhance your brain function? Yup, that's what they're saying. "Reading is not just one of the talents we were born with, like seeing and hearing. It is a 'recent cultural invention,' as one researcher put it. Just a few thousand years ago, some creative human probably carved the first symbol in the wall of a cave, launching his followers on a rich, new adventure -- reading."-- Reading is a very complex task that requires several different regions of the brain to work together.
-- But surprisingly, we don't use the same neural circuits to read as we grow from infants to adults. So our brains are constantly changing throughout our lives.
-- It appears possible that reading can improve the "connectivity" between the various brain circuits that are essential to understanding the written word.
-- And there is recent evidence that simply reading a good novel can keep that enhanced "connectivity" working for days, and possibly longer, after we have finished the book.
Over at Emory University scientists put 21 students through an MRI for 30 minutes a day for 19 days while they were reading. "The scanner revealed a sharp spike in two neural networks after the first chapter, and that continued throughout the rest of the experiment, including the five days after the reading was over." So the students' brains kept functioning on "high" even days after they finished the reading.
I bet many of you already knew this . . . What was the last novel you read?