Older Happy Americans

Cognitive Activity and Dementia

Angie SzumlinskiHealth

You know the old adage, an active body stays active? Well, what about an active mind? Will doing crossword puzzles, playing solitaire, being socially engaged, reading the newspaper, and engaging in activities that require you to “think” keep your mind healthy?

According to some researchers, yes! They found that a cognitively active lifestyle in older age may delay the onset of dementia in Alzheimer’s Disease by as much as 5 years! Imagine! You are probably thinking “well I have time, I’m not old yet” but think about this, chronological age has nothing to do with physical or cognitive age. You know that grandma who thinks she can still skip rope right? In her mind, she is young, and she is engaged with activities that keep her young!

You shouldn’t run out and buy a bunch of crossword puzzle books, that probably won’t impact you nearly as much as being socially engaged and active. Study or no study, people who are not engaged tend to be depressed and depression is often a precursor to cognitive decline! Whether you are 25 or 55 (or older), keep moving your body and engaging your mind, it will likely pay off in the end! Stay well, stay informed, and stay tuned!