Walking Guide

Exercise Keeps Your Mind Sharp

A new study from the National Institutes of Health found that the most sedentary individuals (i.e. couch potatoes) are 2.5 times more likely to develop dementia than regular exercisers. Dementia is a condition of declining mental abilities ( especially memory) that affects your personality, skills (like driving a car), and verbal abilities.

Action Sparked
Stay on a consistent exercise program throughout your lifespan. Try not to view exercise as a temporary means to and end (weight loss). It is part of a healthy lifestyle, and while it does help you lose and maintain weight, it can steer off plenty of health problems, from heart disease to depression.
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Member Comments

weird action on the internet. but agree on exercise. i do not want to rely on others to care for me. too scary. Report
I have exercised all of my life.
Now I am 74 and I can write and do things but I cannot talk properly and I am still walking but conversation is difficult to walk with my Rail trail walk friends. . Pat in Maine. Report
Physical activity definitely affects mental state. Report
Off course. Need to do this. Report
Thank you! Report
Written a long time ago, but the information is tsill truth. Report
Thanks for sharing article Report
Another long term benefit to exercising...Than
x! Report
Plant seeds of happiness, hope, success, and love; it will all come back to you in abundance. This is the law of nature. - Steve Maraboli ~ 3/14/18 Report
I appreciate INSIGHT62's comment and I like the way exercise helps me feel today, too! I agree that it is a LIFEstyle. My mother had severe dementia but died of cancer at 67. She exercised daily and walked daily from when I was in my teens into her late 40's. Gradually, she started not being able to find her way home. Because of my mom's example, I was riding a bike 20 miles and rollerskating every week for most of my teen years and into my young adult life. Report
Regular exercise has helped me have a positive attitude and feel more energetic. I don't know if it will ward off dementia in my elderly years, but I sure like how it makes me feel today. It's a lifestyle. Report
My heart breaks for those dealing with dementia, whether they themselves have it or if caring for a loved one. Report
Let's all get moving! Report
My mom has dementia. I had to have her declared incompetent after a neighbor told me she wasn't acting rationally. The next day, I learned from another person that my mom had been to their house skiing for a gun so she could kill my dad. Why they never warned me is beyond belief.

She has been in a nursing home since. Mostly under control with meds but she still has periods of severe breakdowns where ill get called in to try to calm her.

So, keep an eye on elderly relatives and neighbors...it could save someone's life. I am so thankful I was able to do something before my dad was fatally harmed. I later learned from him that he was scared of her. He never told...he was 91 and mostly blind and depended on her to drive him places. Report
Walking Guide

About The Author

Nicole Nichols
Nicole Nichols
A certified personal trainer and fitness instructor with a bachelor's degree in health education, Nicole loves living a healthy and fit lifestyle and helping others do the same. Nicole was formerly SparkPeople's fitness expert and editor-in-chief, known on the site as "Coach Nicole." Make sure to explore more of her articles and blog posts.
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