Document Detail

Measuring the impact of exercise on cognitive aging: methodological issues.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21514694     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Physical exercise and fitness have been proposed as potential factors that promote healthy cognitive aging. Support for this hypothesis has come from cross sectional, longitudinal, and intervention studies. In the present review, we discuss several methodological problems that limit the conclusions of many studies. The lack of consensus on how to retrospectively measure exercise intensity is a major difficulty for all studies that attempt to estimate lifelong impact of exercise on cognitive performance in older adults. Intervention studies have a much better capacity to establish causality, but still suffer from difficulties arising from inadequate control groups and the choice and modality of administration of cognitive measures. We argue that, while the association between exercise and preserved cognition during aging is clearly demonstrated, the specific hypothesis that physical exercise is a cause of healthy cognitive aging has yet to be validated. A number of factors could mediate the exercise-cognition association, including depression, and social or cognitive stimulation. The complex interactions among these 3 factors and the potential impact of exercise on cognition remain to be systematically studied. At this time, the best prescription for lifestyle interventions for healthy cognitive aging would be sustained physical, social, and mental activities. What remains unknown is which type of activity might be most useful, and whether everyone benefits similarly from the same interventions.
Delyana I Miller; Vanessa Taler; Patrick S R Davidson; Claude Messier
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2011-4-22
Journal Detail:
Title:  Neurobiology of aging     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1558-1497     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2011 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-4-25     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8100437     Medline TA:  Neurobiol Aging     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
School of Psychology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
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