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Study Identifies Possible Risk Factors for Memory Decline


A new study has identified possible factors for maintaining healthy memory and protecting against memory decline in those over age 55.





Researchers from the University of Alberta collected data from 882 community-dwelling adults between the ages of 53 and 85. They administered tests to measure memory, and then classified the participants as having stable memory, normal memory or declining memory. The participants were followed for an average of 4.5 years.





Adults with stable memory were found more likely to be female, educated, have a higher BMI, live with someone else, be engaged in social activities and engaged in cognitive activities such as using a computer or learning a second language. For adults 75 years or older, those with stable memory also had a faster gait, lower heart rate and fewer depressive symptoms.





Participants who were in the declining memory group tended to engage in less cognitive activity, less self-maintenance activity, and less social activity. Those who were 75 or older also had a slower gait.





The study was published February 11, 2019 in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.


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