Tuesday, January 17, 2006

What's good for the heart is good for the head

Older men and women who exercised even modestly three times a week or more reduced their risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer's, according to a new study.

Seniors who did as little as 15 minutes a day of modest exercise three days a week reduced their risk of developing dementia by about 30%.

Not only did regular exercise cut the risk of dementia, the results suggested it might also help to delay progression of the condition in people who begin to develop symptoms.

Lead researcher, Dr. Eric Larson believes exercise may improve brain function by boosting blood flow to areas of the brain used for memory. And, even if you're 75 and have not exercised before, you can still benefit by starting to exercise now, according to reasearchers.

So, here's another possible link beween vascular and brain health. We've seen this before with the statins which have also been shown to decrease Alzheimer's risk, possibly as a result of increased blood flow.

See an informative video on exercise and dementia. Scroll to the January, 17, 2006 entry.

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