Is there any relationship between life behavior and cognitive decline as people age? York U post-doctoral fellow Alina Cohen and her colleagues reviewed cross-sectional data of 45,522 participants, age 30 to 80+ from the 2012 annual component of the Canadian Community Health Survey. They found that higher levels of physical activity were related to higher daily fruit and vegetable consumption and better cognitive performance, and those with higher BMI, low physical activity and low fruit and vegetable consumption trended to poorer cognitive performance. Eating more fruit and vegetables combined with regular exercise is linked to better cognitive functioning. Their research suggests that factors such as adhering to a healthy life style including a diet with rich essential nutrients, regular exercise, having an adequate cardiovascular profile seem to be the reason of maintaining cognitive function and delaying cognitive decline. They conclude that physical activity, fruit and vegetable consumption have positive effects on the brain function for both younger and older adults.
- 1Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, combined with regular exercise, leads to better cognitive functioning and may delay the onset of dementia.
- 2In a study those with higher body mass indexes, low activity levels and fruit and vegetable consumption were associated with poorer cognitive functioning.
- 3It is pertinent to study younger, middle-aged, and older adults collectively to determine lifelong behaviors that may contribute to cognitive decline.
Few studies have looked at the relationship between physical activity and eating fruit and vegetables and the effect it has on the brain for both younger and older adults.