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Posts Tagged ‘brain’

Smoking now linked to memory loss

November 26, 2012 Leave a comment

As if the list of diseases and conditions caused by smoking wasn’t enough – lung cancer, mouth cancer, skin aging, teeth rotting, COPD, lung disease, heart disease etc etc etc.

Now, it’s been linked to memory loss too.

Researchers from King’s College London conducted a study of nearly 9,000 people over 50 years old and showed that smoking affected the brain more than high blood pressure and being overweight.

As reported in the Journal of Age and Ageing their research linked smoking to damage to memory, learning and reasoning.

And it wasn’t just a one-off, the research was conducted over a number of years and participants were tested at the start and again after four and then eight years.

Seriously, if you still smoke, you are in my opinion either suicidal or very very stupid. Oh wait, if you’re smoking research shows you probably are the latter!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-20463363

 

Exercise and keep your marbles in old age

October 25, 2012 1 comment

 

I think one of the greatest levellers in old age is health and well-being. Sure you can be a millionaire with all the private medical insurance you could ever want, but if you haven’t got your health, you’re just as bad off as the state pension dependent eldery people who are scrimping and saving to afford their winter fuel bills, aren’t you.

This seems the best research yet that exercise has a very definitive impact on quality of life.

It’s a significant study. Brain scans of over 600 people showed that people who exercised in retirement had less brain shrinkage than those who didn’t. And the exercise doesn’t have to be vigorous. No they’re not suggesting your average octogenarian hits the squash courts, takes up kick-boxing or hits the weights….hard! Walking several times a week makes a difference too.

Speaking from personal experience, my parents are in their late 70s now. My father plays golf three times a week and despite having double hip replacements I still struggle to keep up with him on a walk, he’s pacing it out at the front of us all! My mother on the other hand hasn’t done anything more strenuous than gardening for her entire life, and she’s becoming slower and slower, mentally and physically.

So, get out there people, get moving, find something you enjoy doing and do it, regularly.

Exercise did not have to be strenuous – going for a walk several times a week sufficed, the journal Neurology says.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-20026099