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How fast you walk could be a sign of dementia

How fast you walk could be a sign of dementia

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Walking slowly as you age is always a warning sign of increased weakness, which experts say can lead to falls and other disorders. Increased research in small groups of older people has found that walking slowly each year can be an early sign of cognitive decline.

This may be due to shrinkage right hippocampusThis is the part of the brain associated with memory According to studies.

But not all symptoms of cognitive decline can be predicted later mental illness Only 10% to 20% of people age 65 or older who have mild cognitive impairment or moderate cognitive impairment will develop dementia within the next year. National Institute on Aging. “In many cases, symptoms of mild cognitive impairment may remain the same or improve,” the company says.

Now, in a large new study of 17,000 adults over the age of 65, those who walk 5% or more slower each year are more likely to develop dementia if they show signs of slow mental processing. study was Posted Tuesday In JAMA Network Open magazine.

“These findings underscore the importance of the method in assessing dementia risk,” wrote Daya Collier, research fellow at Monash University School of Peninsular Medicine in Victoria, Australia.

The new study followed a group of Americans over 65 and Australians over 70 for seven years. Each year, study participants were asked to take cognitive tests that measured general cognitive decline, memory, processing speed and fluency.

Twice a year, the subjects were asked to walk 3 metres, or about 10 feet. Both outcomes were averaged to determine a person’s habitual style.

At the end of the study, the researchers found that people at high risk of developing dementia were not only “doubly low” or very slow, but also showed some signs of cognitive decline, according to Dr. Joe Varghese, MD, professor of geriatrics and neurology. at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, New YorkAnd the who did not participate in the study.

“Furthermore, people with a double disability have a higher risk of developing dementia than people with a walking or cognitive disability,” Varghese wrote in an editorial Tuesday in JAMA.

The dual relationship between walking speed and memory loss predicts postpartum dementia, a Meta-analysis 2020 Nearly 9,000 American adults have been diagnosed.

Despite these findings, Varghese writes, “gait disturbances are not considered an early clinical feature in Alzheimer’s patients.”

There are things we can do as we age to alter the brain contractions that accompany normal aging. studies It has been found to increase aerobic exercise hippocampal volumeSome will gain weight Memory Features.

Deep in the temporal lobe of the brain, the hippocampus is a uniquely shaped organ responsible for learning, coordinating memories, and spatial navigation like B. The ability to remember directions, places and directions.

Aerobic exercise increased the volume of the right anterior hippocampus by 2%, thus reversing age-related organ loss within 1-2 years. 2011 randomized clinical trial. In comparison, those who only did the stretching lost about 1.43% over the same period.

Aerobic exercise is a type of exercise that increases “air”, heart rate and breathing, but you can’t perform the functions consistently. Types of aerobic exercise include brisk walking, swimming, running, cycling, dancing, and kickboxing, as well as any cardio equipment such as a treadmill, elliptical trainer, camper, or ladder climber at your local gym.

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