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Exercise 'helps protect the brain from dementia development'

Exercise 'helps protect the brain from dementia development'
19th November 2010

The importance of exercise in fighting the onset of dementia has again been highlighted by a scientific study.

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee have established that exercise promotes physical changes in the brain that protect it from the development of Alzheimer's disease.

In studying four separate groups of 65 to 85-year-olds, the scientists found that those who did regular exercise were the best at performing memory-related tests.

Research leader professor J Carson Smith said that the discovery could have particular resonance with those deemed to be at risk of developing dementia.

"Our study suggests that if you are at genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease, the benefits of exercise to your brain function might be even greater than for those who do not have that genetic risk," he explained.

Dementia affects around £820,000 people in the UK, according to the Alzheimer's Research Trust, and Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of the condition.

Read more about Barchester's dementia care homes