Could Light-Intensity Exercise Reduce the Risk of Dementia?

Could Light-Intensity Exercise Reduce the Risk of Dementia

Millions of people worldwide have dementia. Although there is no cure so far, the risk of developing this condition may be reduced by certain behavioral changes. A new study discovered a link between a lower risk of dementia and low-intensity exercise in older patients. However, more research is needed to establish whether this link is causal.

Dementia is a collective term for various disorders attributed to cognitive difficulty. In general, people older than 65 are most likely to suffer from this condition, and the majority of patients suffer from the most common type of this disease—Alzheimer’s disease. Given that there is no cure for dementia, doctors are looking for ways to reduce the symptoms and suggest life habits that might help lower the chances of developing it.

This new study involved 62,286 individuals who did not have dementia. The research team examined whether there is a connection between lower chances of developing dementia and low-intensity physical exercises. The participants were divided into four groups based on their activity level. Those who were active had a 20% lower risk of getting dementia, while those who followed their exercise regime very actively had a 28% lower chance. The age and sex of the participants did not affect the study’s results.

Thus far, there is no biological evidence that dementia can be reduced by physical exercise. However, this study is significant since it indicates that the risk of dementia could be decreased by low-intensity physical activity. The findings imply that this activity is more linked to preventing Alzheimer’s than dementia, which may be due to other factors, such as increased blood pressure and diabetes.

Nevertheless, there is a need for more research that involves a more precise summary of the exercise activity and a more extended follow-up period. In addition to that, to investigate the exercise activity, further studies should include the method of actigraphy instead of surveys.

Photo by Dane Wetton on Unsplash

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