Healthy Lifestyle Boosts Cognition In Seniors, Study Finds

A recent study in China has revealed that maintaining a healthy diet and engaging in outdoor exercises can help cut the risk of cognitive impairment among elderlies.

Photo: Healthy Lifestyle in Seniors | InStyleHealth


Extracting from the 2011 – 2014 Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey, experts assessed the impact of dietary patterns and lifestyle habits, gathered at baseline, on cognitive function in 5,716 elderly participants with average age of 82 years. The Mini Mental Status Examination was used to assess the preliminary outcome in 2014.


Diet was rated in line with the consumption of important staple food groups that includes fresh fruit and vegetables, meat and fish, and sugar among others. Lifestyle habits included alcohol intake and tobacco use, as well as outdoor engagement activities.


Participants were classified into quartiles based on their total scores, with higher categories being healthier individuals. The total lifestyle score which combined both diet and life habits was also included in the said analysis.


The study found that all three metrics were significantly correlated with cognitive function. Participants in the highest quartile of diet scores were more than 30 percent less likely to exhibit impaired cognition.


The same was true for those patients with highest versus lowest categories of life habits. Further sub-analyses according to gender classification, also showed similar results with the exception of diet in women, which was only marginally correlated with cognitive results.


Viewing at each lifestyle factors, the investigators revealed that higher consumption of fish and nuts, as well as greater degree of outdoor engagement activities such as exercising were significantly correlated to better cognition among older people. For complete details of this study, feel free to click this link.


Source: Eur J Clin Nutr 2021;75:325-334

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