ISLAMABAD: Older women who have strong legs are likely to fare better when it comes to ageing of the brain, a decade-long study suggests.
The researcher’s team says leg power is a useful marker of whether someone is getting enough exercise to help keep their mind in good shape, reported BBC health.
Exercise releases chemicals in the body that may boost elderly brains, say the scientists.
The researchers tracked the health of more than 150 pairs of twin sisters aged between 43 and 73 at the start of the study.
Leg power was measured (at the start of the study) using a modified piece of gym equipment that measured both speed and power of leg extension, while brain power was measured (at both the start and the end of the study) using computerized tasks that tested memory and mental processing skills.
Generally, the twin who had more leg power at the start of the study sustained their cognition better and had fewer brain changes associated with ageing measured after 10 years.
And the finding remained when other known lifestyle and health risk factors for dementia were included. Lead researcher said that when it came to cognitive ageing, leg strength was the strongest factor that had an impact in the study.
Other factors such as heart health were also important, but the link with leg strength remained even after it was accounted for these.