"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Can a healthy lifestyle prevent memory loss?

A growing body of evidence suggests that a healthy lifestyle is linked to higher pondering skills later in life. But few studies have looked specifically at the results of a healthy lifestyle on memory, and none have checked out the results on memory in individuals with a genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease. Now a study from China offers insight. The study was published online on January 25, 2023. BMJMore than 29,000 people without dementia were included (average age 72). Participants initially underwent cognitive testing in addition to genetic testing for genes that increase Alzheimer's risk, and reported that they practiced six healthy lifestyle habits (eating a healthy weight loss plan, exercising, not smoking, alcohol not drinking, being socially lively, and interesting in activities that challenge the mind). Participants were followed for 10 years, periodically reporting on their lifestyle habits and cognitive testing. At the top of the study, those that followed no less than 4 healthy habits saw significantly slower memory decline than those that didn't follow any healthy habits. This was also true in individuals with Alzheimer's-related genes. Habits related to the most important effects were weight loss plan, cognitive activity, exercise and social interaction. The study was observational and doesn't conclusively prove that a healthy lifestyle preserves memory. But a healthy lifestyle has many health advantages, and also you'll only win by improving yourself.

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