It is not the exercise but physical activity that reduces the risk
Researchers from Rush University Medical Center new study reveals physical activity may be the key when it comes to preventing the most common form of dementia, Alzheimer’s. The best part the simplest of activities such as playing cards will cut the risk it even applies if the person is over eighty.
This new study had included 716 men and women in their eighties that were dementia free. All participants had worn a ActiGraph, much like a wrist watch, that is known as the ‘gold standard’ when it comes to measuring physical activity. Participants had worn the device for 24 hours a day for ten days.
These devices have been used in hundreds of large scale studies. Over 1500 universities and leading research facilities use these graphs to provide objective activity in a range of areas including elderly activity. According to Dr. Aron S. Buchman, M.D., associate professor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at Rush and lead author of study, “It doesn’t make a difference if you’re chopping onions or walking up and down stairs or on an exercise machine,”reported in Time Healthland.
Participants over the next four years had gone through yearly cognitive tests and had been asked to report how often they participated in activities such as walking, gardening and other social and brain stimulating activities.
Researchers had taken into account all activities along with other factors such as age, sex, education, overall health and genetic factors.
Among the participants around ten percent had received an diagnosis of Alzheimer’s during the follow-up period. Participants with a higher activity level had a lower risk for Alzheimer’s and those with the least amount of activity at the start of study (actigraph readings in the bottom 10th percentile) had a 2.3 times more likely chance to receive a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s.
However, it is noted that the actigraphs do not distinguish between the types of activity or intensity, therefore, it is hard to determine if some kinds of physical activity protects against Alzheimer’s more than other types.
Dr. Buchman stated “It doesn’t make a difference if you’re chopping onions or walking up and down stairs or on an exercise machine.”
Dr. Steven Arnold, a professor of psychiatry and neurology at the University of Pennsylvania and director of the Penn Memory Center had stated that the study is very simple and has a very simple and clear message move more. “The bottom line is that people who tend to be more active than others have a lower risk.”
This study appears in the April 18th journal of Neurology.
This is not the first study which has shown that physical activity can cut the risk for Alzheimer’s. In 2010, a study sponsored by the U.S. National Institute on Aging revealed walking on a regular basis can decrease or postpone the onset of memory problems brought on by Alzheimer’s or dementia.
According to the Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation, physical activity reduces your risk for developing Alzheimer’s by fifty percent.
Just by doing simple activities thirty minutes a day for five days a week such as walking, gardening or even doing the laundry count.
Enjoy the warmer weather in Detroit and take a walk:
Belle Isle Park
6925 East Jefferson Avenue
Dequindre Cut Greenway
1776 Woodbridge Street
Campus Martius Park
800 Woodward Avenue
19013 Woodward Avenue