Similar to other parts of your body, your brain may lose some agility as you get older. It can deteriorate even more if you don’t take care of it. The good news is that emerging evidence suggests there are steps you can take to help keep your brain healthy as you age. Research has shown that people who are regularly engaged in social interaction maintain their brain vitality, especially when combined with physical and mental activity. One study reported that leisure activities which combine physical, mental and social activity are most likely to prevent dementia. In the study of 800 men and women aged 75 years and older, researchers found that those who were more physically active, more mentally active or more socially engaged had a lower risk for developing dementia. Additionally, those who combined these activities together did even better.
Other research has found that sports, cultural activities, emotional support and close personal relationships together appear to have a protective effect against dementia. So try to stay socially engaged in activities that stimulate the mind and body:
- Volunteer in community groups and causes
- Stay active in the workplace
- Join bridge clubs, square dancing clubs or other social groups