Bilingualism: Fuel for the Brain

Throughout the ages language has been our tool to communicate ideas, share information and express ourselves. It is so deeply rooted in our cultural and social identities that today it is estimated there are over 5000 languages and dialects spoken around the world.

In our increasingly interconnected world, knowing more than one language is highly advantageous, opening the door to broader human interaction. For a business, language is a vital instrument to reach new markets and expand.

But did you know that learning a second language also fuels our brain? According to studies, understanding and regularly speaking another language boosts brain performance. This is particularly enhanced in bilingual people, who perform better than monolingual people in tasks involving prioritising, multi-tasking, memory and attention span.

Researchers believe that in a bilingual person, the brain has to continuously separate and switch between the two languages, concentrating

on one at a time. This function is in essence a form of brain training, keeping the mind “fit”, much like doing Sudoku and crossword puzzles.

Other studies have shown that the active minds of bilingual individuals can help delay the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease by an average of four years.

Didn’t learn a second language as a child? Don’t worry, because scientific research suggests you can still boost your brain power by learning a second language as an adult.

If you want to learn a new language and give your brain a work out, check out these popular apps and online sites: