Regularly spending more than two hours a day behind the wheel can send your brain into reverse. Researchers at Leicester University have been looking at sedentary behaviour and found IQ fell faster in middle-aged people who drove long distances every day. While it was known that driving three to four hours a day can be bad for your heart, the research suggests it can be bad for your brain too. A study of more than 500,000 British people aged 37-73 took place over five years, during which they took various tests. Lifestyle factors such as smoking and bad diet can cause cognitive decline and now, it seems, can long hours spent driving.
Watching TV for long periods can have a similar effect. The good news is that using a computer up to two or three hours a day can actually boost cognitive skills as it simulates the brain.