It’s time to hit the treadmill. People who exercise regularly not only have larger brains, but also a lower risk of developing dementia, according to researchers from UCLA and Boston University. In particular, regular physical activity affects the size of the hippocampus, which is the part of the brain that controls short-term memory. This protective effect is strongest in those aged 75 and older. And the opposite also holds true: Low physical activity leads to a higher risk for dementia. The UCLA researchers found an association between low physical activity and a higher risk for dementia in older individuals, suggesting that regular physical activity for older adults could lead to higher brain volumes and a reduced risk for developing dementia. The takeaway: You are never too old to exercise for brain health and to stave off the risk for developing dementia.
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