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New Study Finds Vigorous Exercise May Lower Risk of Alzheimer’s

Doctors have long known that high blood pressure (Hypertension) can increase the risk of Alzheimer’s Dementia. A study published in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association from Wake Forest University School of Medicine suggests that vigorous physical activity may help lower that risk.

“We know that physical exercise offers many benefits, including lowering blood pressure, improving heart health, and potentially delaying cognitive decline,” said Richard Kazibwe, M.D., assistant professor of internal medicine at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and lead author of the study. “However, the amount and the intensity of exercise needed to preserve cognition is unknown.”

 

Key Takeaways From This Study:

  • The SPRINT MIND Trial showed that intensive control of blood pressure in older people significantly reduced the risk of developing mild cognitive impairment, which is a precursor of early dementia.
  • According to the researchers, close to 60% of the participants engaged in vigorous physical activity at least once a week, including those over the age of 75 years old.
  • Those who engaged in one or more sessions of vigorous physical activity had lower rates of mild cognitive impairment and dementia.
  • However, the protective impact of vigorous exercise was less pronounced among those under the age of 75 as it was among those older than 75 years old.

“While this study provides evidence that vigorous exercise may preserve cognitive function in high-risk patients with hypertension, more research is needed to include device-based physical activity measurements and more diverse participant populations,” concluded Kazibwe.

 

You can read the most recent analysis of the original study, Insights From the SPRINT MIND Trial which was published in the Journal Hypertension by clicking on the link

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