Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

'Use it or lose it'

Su doki, crosswords and other puzzles slow down mental deterioration associated with ageing, according to scientists from the University of Hertfordshire. The researchers found that mentally stimulating activities increased cognitive ability, whereas social and physical activities had no effect. Older people outperform younger people on the planning of future real life actions, such as errands. However, making the tasks less ‘real life’ reverses this phenomenon, so that younger people started to outperform their older counterparts as the tasks became progressively more abstract.

Professor Gilhooly, who led the study, said: “The research suggests that it may be possible to slow down cognitive ageing by deliberately engaging in mentally demanding activities. “These results are consistent with the ‘use it or lose it’ view of the role of mental activity and suggest that the intention to maintain brainpower is likely to be important as the activities themselves.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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