A recent study has revealed that exercise could lower the risk of dementia. Researchers from UCLA investigated how physical activity could affect brain size. The results were both promising and astonishing.
There have been studies that have found a relationship between exercise and cognitive decline. As well as links between Alzheimer’s and dementia. On the other hand, other studies have found no significant association. Researchers are constantly looking for new factors that may cause the effects of dementia. Studies have shown that increased brain activity may reduce the development of the condition. However, this is the first study to show clinical evidence exercise could be beneficial.
The study used 3700 participants who were 60 years of age or older. They looked at the connection between physical activity and any form of dementia. The cohorts used were the offspring of participants used in a previous study. The Framingham Study was used to explore the causes of dementia as well as other conditions.
The research conducted suggested that exercise affects the size of the hippocampus. The hippocampus is the part of the brain that controls short-term memory. Short term memory and long term memory are both diminished in patients who are suffering from dementia. Regular physical activity may protect people over the age of 75 from developing dementia.
This research, as well as previous studies, highlight what many suspected. It is important for people to remain active even in old age. Allowing them to become detached from society and stop exercising could lead to dementia. Keeping up a healthy exercise routine may prevent the development of mental conditions such as this.
The study shows that we are never too old for exercise. Although, one would be right to consider what types of exercise the elderly can complete safely. Obviously, this study does not suggest that 70-year-old men should still be playing rugby. That said, there are many different forms of exercise that the elderly can participate in at home or in care. For instance, the elderly can garden. Gardening provides a brilliant chance for people over the age of 60 to get outdoors and exercise without strenuous activity. For individuals who have mobility issues, there are plenty of seated exercises. These can be completed in organised classes and therefore may help elderly people socialise.
Although there have been, many possibilities put forward on how to prevent or reduce the effects of dementia. In the most recent study, exercise was shown to be one of the most crucial. Increased exercise reduces the chances of conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and strokes. All of which at one point or another have been linked to the development of dementia.
The main conclusion from the latest study must be that unhealthy living is a possible cause of dementia. Due to this, it is crucial that exercise habits continue even during retirement. It seems clear that exercise not only strengthens the body but helps the brain stay healthy as well.
Hopefully, further research will demonstrate the effect exercising can have on cognitive function.