Aging and Longevity

Tai Chi Exercise increased Brain Size in Elderly

credit: National Cancer Institute Bill Branson (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - A study found that Chinese elderly people were able to increase brain volume and improve their memory and thinking skills when they did Tai Chi three times per week over an eight month period. Researchers from the University of South Florida and Fudan University in Shanghai, China reported their findings in the Journal of Alzheimer ’s disease.

The study was inspired from previous research that showed increased brain volume after people participated in aerobic exercise programs. These researchers conducted an 8-month randomized controlled trial that assigned one group to practice Tai Chi and the other had no change. During the same trial, the researchers found that the group that was part of lively discussions three times per week, also showed increased brain volume and mild cognitive improvements.

Taking Vitamin D plus Calcium together might make you Live Longer

Vitamins - BSN

(Best Syndication News) - A new study found that vitamin D when taken along with calcium reduced the death rate for the elderly. The study was published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (JCEM).

Researchers assigned elderly participants either to take just a vitamin D supplement or to take a vitamin D along with a calcium supplement. The data came from 1,000 participants over eight randomized controlled trials. The majority of participants, 90 percent, were women with a median age of 70. Over a three-year time, those taking vitamin D along with calcium had a reduced death rate by 9 percent.

Alzheimer’s disease might be delayed by drinking Caffeinated Coffee

credit: National Cancer Institute Renee Comet (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - In a recent study, elderly adults who had higher blood caffeine levels avoided progressing into Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers said that most of the people drank coffee as their primary source of caffeine intake. The study was published in the June 5 online version of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

In the study that came from researchers at the University of South Florida, 124 residents of Tampa or Miami between 65 and 88 were studied for their memory function and caffeine intake. All the participants had mild cognitive impairment (MCI) at the beginning of the study because the researchers wanted to see if their mental condition would worsen or be protected from caffeine intake. The researchers point out that around 15 percent of people with MCI will develop Alzheimer’s disease every year.

Eating Foods High in Vitamin D might reduce Stroke Risk in Japanese-American Men

credit: National Cancer Institute Renee Comet (Photographer) PD

(Best Syndication News) - A 34-year study of Japanese-American men found an increased stroke risk later in life with those who did not eat a diet high in vitamin D. The study was published in Stroke, an American Heart Association journal.

The study’s lead author, Gotaro Kojima, M.D., said that eating foods high in vitamin D might be helpful for preventing strokes. Dr. Kojima is a geriatric medicine fellow from John A. Burns School of Medicine at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu.

Vitamin D interested researchers because of the possibility that it may help reduce the risk of diseases such as cancer and diabetes. Vitamin D has long been established as a necessary nutrient for preventing rickets in children and to help prevent bone loss in adults.

Use it or lose it when it comes to Brain Function in Old Age

credit: National Cancer Institute Rhoda Baer (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - Researchers found that elderly people fared better with their cognitive performance when they were engaged socially, mentally, and physically. In a study that appeared in the April 27, 2012 issue of the Cell Press journal Trends in Cognitive Sciences, researchers discussed the importance of staying engaged to preserve brain function when we age.

Lars Nyberg of Umeå University in Sweden explained, “Although some memory functions do tend to decline as we get older, several elderly show well preserved functioning and this is related to a well-preserved, youth-like brain.”

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