Association between physical activity and brain health in older adults.


In the present cross-sectional study, we examined physical activity (PA) and its possible association with cognitive skills and brain structure in 331 cognitively healthy elderly. Based on the number of self-reported light and hard activities for at least 30 minutes per week, participants were assigned to 4 groups representing different levels of PA. The cognitive skills were assessed by the Mini Mental State Examination score, a verbal fluency task, and the Trail-making test as a measure of visuospatial orientation ability. Participants also underwent a magnetic resonance imaging of the brain. Multiple regression analysis revealed that greater PA was associated with a shorter time to complete the Trail-making test, and higher levels of verbal fluency. Further, the level of self-reported PA was positively correlated with brain volume, white matter, as well as a parietal lobe gray matter volume, situated bilaterally at the precuneus. These present cross-sectional results indicate that PA is a lifestyle factor that is linked to brain structure and function in late life.

DOI: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2012.04.013

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@article{Benedict2013AssociationBP, title={Association between physical activity and brain health in older adults.}, author={C. Benedict and Samantha J. Brooks and Joel Kullberg and Richard Nordenskj{\"{o}ld and Jonathan Burgos and Madeleine le Grev{\`e}s and Lena Kilander and Elna-Marie Larsson and Lars Johansson and H{\aa}kan Ahlstr{\"{o}m and Lars Lind and Helgi B. Schi{\"{o}th}, journal={Neurobiology of aging}, year={2013}, volume={34 1}, pages={83-90} }