As the largest resource of information specific to women's brain health, we are sure you will find what you are looking for, and promise that you will discover new information.
Published on: August 1, 2013
by Daily Rx:
Exercise may improve memory for people with mild cognitive impairment.
Mild cognitive impairment causes problems with memory, language and thinking. It can also put people at a greater risk for developing Alzheimer’s. For patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), exercising may offer some protection for the mind.
A recent study found that exercising improved memory and brain function in older adults with MCI. The same study also found similar benefits for older adults who did not have MCI.
This study was led by J. Carson Smith, PhD, of the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Maryland in College Park. The research team wanted to determine whether exercise would have an effect on cognitive function (processing and understanding information) in older adults with MCI.
This study included 35 older adults between the ages of 60 and 88. The participants had exercised less than three days a week in the previous six months.
The researchers split the participants into two groups: 17 participants with MCI and 18 participants with healthy brain function.
Both groups were put on a 12-week exercise program that included 44 sessions of walking on a treadmill at moderate intensity while being supervised. The intensity of each session was increased gradually during the first four weeks until participants were walking for 30 minutes per session for four sessions per week.
At the beginning and end of the study, the participants completed a series of neuropsychological tests to measure their memory and brain function.
During one of these tests, brain scans were taken to measure brain activity.
Participants also completed exercise tests before and after the program to measure levels of fitness. Heart rate and blood pressure were two of the measures used to determine fitness level.
The researchers found that both the MCI group and the healthy group saw a significant improvement in their memory scores for at least one of the tests given. Both groups also had about a 10 percent increase in fitness level after the 12-week program.
Additionally, researchers found that after the program, there was a decrease in brain region activation while participants completed a test. This means that the brain did not have to work as hard to come up with answers on the test.
The study authors concluded that their findings suggest that exercising may lead to an improvement in cognitive function in older adults with and without MCI. They added, however, that more research is needed to determine if exercising can delay the progression to Alzheimer’s disease.
This study was published in the August issue of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.
This study was funded by a grant from the Graduate School Research Growth Initiative at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and by the Clinical and Translational Science Award Program of the National Center for Research Resources, National Institutes of Health.
White women whose genes put them at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease are more likely than white men with similar risk genes to be diagnosed between the ages of 65 and 75, a study drawing on...
Researchers at the Keck School of Medicine of USC are tackling the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States—Alzheimer’s disease—with a new study that intervenes decades before the disease develops. The school is...
A devastating chronic neurodegenerative disease, Alzheimer’s disease (AD) currently affects around 5.5 million people in the United States alone. Causing progressive mental deterioration, it ultimately advances to impact basic bodily functions such as walking and...
The material presented through the Think Tank feature on this website is in no way intended to replace professional medical care or attention by a qualified practitioner. WBHI strongly advises all questioners and viewers using this feature with health problems to consult a qualified physician, especially before starting any treatment. The materials provided on this website cannot and should not be used as a basis for diagnosis or choice of treatment. The materials are not exhaustive and cannot always respect all the most recent research in all areas of medicine.