Latest News » Aerobic exercise could reduce risk for dementia in older women

Regular aerobic exercise was found to have possibly improved memory support in women over 70.

Regular aerobic exercise was found to have possibly improved memory support in women over 70.

It's well established that aerobic workouts and regular exercise are great for your heart and lungs, but a new study has found they may yield yet another benefit: Improved memory support!

According to HealthDay News, new research published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine on April 8 studied 86 women whose ages ranged between 70 and 80 years old and suffered from "mild cognitive impairment," a memory condition that is frequently seen as a risk factor for dementia. Teresa Liu-Ambrose and her team at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver had the women complete six months of twice-a-week, hour-long workouts that included brisk walking, resistance training with weights, lunges or squats and muscle toning.

The study found that the 29 women who went through with this regimen exhibited a significantly larger hippocampus, the part of the brain that controls learning and verbal memory. Those who did not follow through on the six months of aerobic exercises did not see any difference.

"The authors said that the findings do indicate that aerobic exercise does slow the shrinkage of the hippocampus in women who are at risk of developing dementia," the source reports. "They recommended regular aerobic exercise to keep mild cognitive impairment at bay."

However, the researchers also cautioned that this conclusion isn't definitive and that further investigation is necessary to determine whether or not there is a true cause-and-effect relationship between aerobic exercise and hippocampus size.

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