“Listening to the radio makes you smarter!” effect applies to “audiobooks” as well? | FRIDAY DIGITAL

“Listening to the radio makes you smarter!” effect applies to “audiobooks” as well?

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on LINE

What do audiobooks, which provide only audio information, do to our brains?

Audiobooks, which are read by professional narrators and others from a variety of genres such as novels, business books, and study books, are gaining popularity as a way to efficiently gain knowledge and understanding of a book in a limited amount of time. They are well-received by people who do not have time to read or who are not good at reading books, as they can enjoy reading books as if they were on the radio.

Many users say they have improved their reading efficiency and increased the amount of reading they do. We interviewed Dr. Shuntoku Kato, a brain scientist and representative of Brain School, Inc.

Dr. Shuntoku Kato is an advocate of brain number training and brain science reading aloud. He also recommends walking to activate the exercise brain, saying that the brain is the place that is greatly affected by walking. He himself has been walking for his brain for many years.

–Dr. Kato has conducted the world’s first MRI study on the relationship between radio listening and brain growth, and has published several audiobook versions of his own books.

Can we expect the same effect from audiobooks as from radio? “Technically speaking, radio and audiobooks may have slightly different brain science components. In the experiment, we thought that the auditory brain area was stimulated most by the radio because it uses the language system, but in fact, the memory and comprehension areas of the right brain were more active.

In the previous experiment, it was found that continuous listening to the radio increased the memory brain area by up to 2.4 times and the auditory and comprehension brain areas by up to 2 times, demonstrating that the act of listening to the radio has a beneficial effect on brain growth.

In the case of radio, listening to the personality’s voice creates the illusion or sensation that you have met them, even if you haven’t actually met them. I think I responded very much to what I wanted to understand. I thought that when I listen to people, when I actively try to understand them, I use my right brain, which controls non-verbal language, and my understanding of the sounds coming from space is also greatly enhanced.

The memory area of the right brain is involved in image memory. Imagery memory is a function related to “seeing,” but even without direct visual input, visual information is created in the brain as an image, and stimulation is provided. In the experiment, continuous listening to the radio enhanced the brain’s ability to supplement words with imagination, and the right brain’s memory area was particularly activated.

He said, “So I wonder if listening to the radio with elements of how to listen to it would have the same effect. Audiobooks use celebrities and various other people as narrators, but it’s not like radio, where you have to establish the character of the personality.

The narrator is reading for the audience, so from a brain science standpoint, there is a gap between what we hear on the radio and what we hear on the radio. I think there is a bit of a gap between what we hear on the radio and what we hear on the radio.

–I think it is important to match the reader and the book, but it may be difficult to establish the reader’s character.

I’m not very good at reading aloud, but I feel as if I should be the one to read my book. If the author is reading, I would want to listen to the unfamiliar narrative.

Reading depends on the impression of the reader’s reading style and voice. The impression of my reading is totally different from that of a famous person’s reading. For example, if my book was read by Hidetoshi Nishijima or Haruka Ayase, of course I would say, “Please, please,” but the nuance would be very different.

In the case of a favorite actor or a favorite voice, it would probably stimulate and activate the brain in a different way than if I were to read it, though.

I mean, the author’s version of the audiobook, Hidetoshi Nishijima’s version, Haruka Ayase’s version. I think it would be so much fun to have those audiobooks. This is a great idea. I just had an idea while talking about it, but I think that in the future, authors reading out loud by themselves will also become a trend.

I think that when the author reads the book, the right brain is stimulated more because of the arguments that are put in the book. For example, when I explain about brain enhancement methods, if I say, ‘There are brain enhancement methods,’ while thinking of brain regions, and if someone else reads out the brain enhancement methods while following the words, the implied image is completely different.

–Is the same true for novels?

Certainly, if an author reads from a novel, you want to listen to it. But in the case of a novel, I think it is a little different because of the characters. If the author is speaking as an expert, I think it would make sense as an audiobook.

Brain number is a brain classification system proposed by Dr. Kato. The brain, which is divided into about 120 compartments including the left and right hemispheres, is broadly classified into eight areas: auditory, memory, thinking, visual, comprehension, communication, emotional, and motor systems.

Is the visual system stronger or the auditory system stronger? Which system is more dominant is determined by each person.

I myself consider my auditory brain area to be weak, and since I’ve been diagnosing people through brain imaging for 35 years, my visual system is by far the most developed.

For example, if a person with a strong visual system watches TV, his or her visual cognition will inevitably be higher. Conversely, people with a strong auditory system tend to easily hear and understand spoken words without having to follow the message when watching TV.

There is a difference between a person who is good at music and listens to classical music all the time listening to the radio or an audiobook, and a painter or someone who does graphics every day.

I think the way we listen differs greatly depending on whether we have a strong visual system or a strong auditory system. In that sense, the benefit from a neuroscientific standpoint is that audiobooks and radio can strengthen a weak brain or further strengthen a strong brain.”

Women are more likely to have a strong auditory system, while men are more likely to have a strong visual system

Due to the way the brain develops at an early age, it is said that women are more likely to have a strong auditory system, accounting for about 80% of the total, while men are more likely to have a strong visual system, accounting for about 60% of the total.

Those with a strong auditory system are characterized by the ease with which they can access verbal information, so when listening to audiobooks, women tend to have an easier time remembering words, while men tend to be able to visualize scenes more easily. So, considering the usage, I think it is possible that men are more likely to listen to audiobooks to prevent blurring or to strengthen their verbal memory.

In any case, whether you are a visual or auditory person, it is very important to have a habit of using your sense of hearing to activate your brain as a whole.

Walking stimulates episodic memory in particular.

–You usually recommend walking, but do you think walking while listening to an audiobook has any positive effects?

Do you think walking while listening to an audiobook has any positive effects? Walking and moving around stimulates episodic memory. The human brain, the hippocampus, is particularly responsive to episodes. By listening to an audiobook while stimulating episodic memory, the event of listening to the audiobook and its contents are more likely to stick.

In other words, the situation that creates the event of “I studied that at that time” is stronger than the situation of always listening to an audiobook in the same room space.

If you have dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, episodic memory doesn’t come into play. Listening to an audiobook while walking is a great way to stimulate episodic memory.

Walking outside means that there are many things on the road, and by moving around, we receive a variety of information. This has the synergistic effect of stimulating emotions, making it easier for episodic memory to respond, and making it easier for information that comes in through the ears to take root.

–Do you think there are any positive effects on the brain from “reading by listening” before going to bed?

I think so. I read a book titled “Smart! I have published a book titled “366 Days of One Minute Reading Before Sleep” (Seitosha), and if you read aloud before going to bed and then go to sleep, it will be easier to fix in your memory. It is easier to fix in your memory if you read aloud before going to bed and then go to sleep.

Reading aloud means that you read aloud yourself, while audiobooks mean that you listen to the audio. When you listen while thinking about speaking what you have heard, it is easier to stimulate the transduction center of the brain. Human beings listen in order to speak. If you remember that and listen with the intention of saying it yourself, I think it will stick with you more easily.

This method is ideal for language materials and study books. For example, if you listen to English vocabulary and conversation before going to bed and pronounce the words yourself, they will easily stick in your memory. The trick is not to work too hard, so that it does not interfere with sleep.

–Do you recommend audiobooks?

I think they are very useful if you choose how to use them. I myself am a paper-based person, so listening to audiobooks is like a change of pace. If you use only visual media, it is difficult to shift to the brain area, so it is better to include audio media as well. I think it would be good if I could use it like a radio.

In fact, it would be nice to have both. I think it would be good for those who prefer print to listen to the audio after reading the text for a deeper understanding, and for those who prefer audio to read the book after listening to the audio to improve their speed-reading skills.

Many audiobooks offer a free trial period. We recommend that you try them out to see if you like the narrator who reads the book, how easy it is to listen to, and whether the service and application are easy to use for you.

Toshinori Kato is a neurologist and medical doctor, and the director of Kato Platinum Clinic. Visiting professor at Showa University. In 2006, he founded Brain School, Inc. He has diagnosed and treated more than 10,000 people from children to the very elderly using the Kato method of MRI brain imaging, and diagnosed developmental disorders and other brain characteristics. At Kato Platinum Clinic, he diagnoses brain health, personality, and aptitude, and provides brain treatment that does not rely on drugs alone. He is the author of “Brain Sharpens in a Flash! Brain Training Book” (Asa Publishing Co., Ltd.), “The Great Left-Handed Brain” (Diamond Inc.), “How to Use Your Brain to Become Smart for Life” (Sanmark Publishing Inc.), “The Strongest Walking Brain” (Jiji Press), and many others (* is also available as an audiobook).

Click here for the ” Brain School” website.

  • Interview and text Kayo Fujioka

Photo Gallery3 total

Photo Selection

Check out the best photos for you.

Related Articles