Including regular walking, healthy food and proper management of metabolic and vascular risk factors in the routine could help slow down mental decline in older individuals, the findings of a new study have found.
The study researchers from the Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability (FINGER) attempted to study the effect of comprehensive intervention on brain function. They also attempted to find out the link between most vital risk factors such as high body mass index and heart health to age related dementia.
The researchers involved 1260 people at the risk of dementia for the study- all of them aged between 60 and 77 years. They then randomly allotted them to two different groups- one the control group and the other an interventional group who received health advice on a regular basis.
Following a 2 year period, the researchers then tested the mental function of the participants the participants using the Neuropsychological Test Battery, in which, a higher score depicted better mental function. They found that the participants in the intervention group performed 25% than those in the control group.
To add to that, the results in certain tests were quite striking. This study is the first ever randomized controlled trial that is designed to address these risk factors, which can in turn, prove to be beneficial in preventing cognitive decline in older individuals at a risk of the disease.
The results of the study are now published in the journal Lancet, and the researchers now hope to follow the patients for atleast 7 more years.