Active lifestyle 'could cut Alzheimer's risk'

26 November 2012

Leading an active lifestyle could cut the risk of Alzheimer's disease in older adults, according to new research.

A study conducted at the University of California in Los Angeles looked at the brain structure of 876 adults with the average age of 78, with the condition of the participants ranging from normal cognition to Alzheimer's dementia.

Researchers took 20 years of clinical data from the group, including body mass index and lifestyle habits, like recreational sports, gardening and yard work, cycling and dancing.

They also used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and a technique called voxel-based morphometry to explore the relationship between energy output and volume of grey matter.

A strong link was found between energy output and grey matter volumes in the areas of the brain vital for cognitive function.

"Grey matter includes neurons that function in cognition and higher order cognitive processes," said Dr Cyrus Raji.

"The areas of the brain that benefited from an active lifestyle are the ones that consume the most energy and are very sensitive to damage."

Posted by Jeanette Royston

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare.

Find a treatment, test or scan available at:


Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.


Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...


Diagnostic imaging

© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)