"After two years, the group which underwent lifestyle changes showed improvement in cognitive function and performed better in memory tests. The speed test results were also found better for that group compared to those who underwent standard care."
Helsinki, July 20 - Finnish researchers have suggested that a healthy lifestyle helps in fighting mental decline, with exercise and diet holding significant potential against Alzheimer's disease.

The study, led by Miia Kivipelto from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki, has shown exercise and diet have a major impact on the risk of an individual suffering from Alzheimer's disease at later stage of his life, Good News from Finland reported.

The study trial -- the Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability (FINGER Study)-- involved 1,260 adults.

Those recruited for the study aged between 60 and 77, and were facing a risk of Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia.

The subjects were divided into two groups.One group was offered standard care while the other group was asked to undergo lifestyle and diet changes.

After two years, the group which underwent lifestyle changes showed improvement in cognitive function and performed better in memory tests. The speed test results were also found better for that group compared to those who underwent standard care.

Previous studies had observed lifestyle factors linked to slowing cognition and Alzheimer's. But Kivipelto said her study was the first randomised, placebo-controlled trial to show that this kind of programme can prevent cognitive decline.


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