Now there’s another reason why working out regularly and maintaining an active lifestyle is beneficial to your health. Researchers from the University of California in Los Angeles discovered that an active lifestyle can reduce risk for Alzheimer’s. But it’s important that we begin now, before we reach old age and can do little to reverse the effects.
After profiling the MRI scans of several seniors, the study reported that active seniors tend to have more gray matter in important brain regions. Dr. Cyrus Raji, who presented the team’s findings, looked at the records of 876 adults, who were recruited into a larger study on heart health starting in 1989. People that were the most active had 5 percent more gray matter compared to people that were least active.
This is big news and could be a big indicator of ways people can prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s in the future. Clinical psychologist and brain health/memory fitness expert Cynthia R. Green writes in the Huffington Post:
“Alzheimer’s disease affects 1 in 8 Americans over age 65 and is the 6th leading cause of death in the U.S. (the only one on that list with no effective cure or treatment to slow progression). Besides the incalculable suffering brought by the disease, the economic drain is hugely burdensome, with an estimated cost in 2012 of $200 billion dollars alone.”
According to the studies, research and commentary done on this issue, plain and simple getting active is the best way to reduce our chances of developing the disease. In addition to physical activity, mental engagement, or cognitive activity, is also necessary for exercising the brain and preventing deterioration.
Staying socially connected throughout your lifetime, attaining occupational endeavors and higher education attainment are also thought to have positive cognitive affects on lifelong prevention methods for developing Alzehimer’s.