Exercising is good for the brainWhether you like to walk outside or on a new or used treadmill, a new study finds that walking can help maintain the health of the brain as well as the body.
According to CNN, researchers from the University of Edinburgh studied a group of nearly 700 senior citizens from Scotland. The study participants answered questions about their leisure and physical activities as well as how often the engaged in various social and intellectual activities. Participants also underwent MRIs to measure certain biomarkers in the brain.
They found that those who were more physically active generally showed less brain shrinkage and fewer white matter lesions, both of which can be signs of Alzheimer's disease. On the other hand, cognitive exercise was found to be less helpful in preserving brain function.
The Daily Mail reports that previous studies have also found that regular exercise can cut the risk of developing dementia by as much as a third, while others suggest keeping mentally active with crosswords, playing cards and computer work to keep the condition at bay.
According to the Alzheimer's Association, one in eight older Americans has Alzheimer's disease. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S. and the only cause of death among the top 10 in that cannot be prevented, cured or slowed.