Exercise NZ media release: 26th March 2021
A new study has found that exercise may help older adults by slowing the onset of memory loss and dementia.
The US results from the UT Southwestern Medical Centre in Texas add to growing evidence that exercise programmes may help older adults slow the onset of memory loss and dementia.
The research has just been published in the Science Daily.
ExerciseNZ chief executive Richard Beddie says the new study clearly shows exercise helps the body as well as the brain. A study found when older adults with mild memory loss followed an exercise programme for a year, the blood flow to their brains increased.
“Exercise truly is the magic pill with no side effects which is something few treatments can claim,” he says. “Exercise is now proven to be both a preventative, as well as being a treatment for many conditions we associate with ageing.
“With the right type and quantity of exercise we can not only slow many of the effects associated with ageing, but we can actually reverse many too. In an environment where we have a taxpayer funded health system, there is an imperative for health bodies, such as DHBs, to encourage physical activity. Not only is it good for individuals, but it lowers the long term health costs, freeing up money for other health conditions that can’t be improved with lifestyle changes.
“New Zealand has a workforce of more than 5000 exercise professionals, who collectively engage with more than half a million Kiwis on a regular basis. The Register of Exercise Professionals is a member of Allied Health Aotearoa, working with other allied health professionals to explore ways of using exercise to help more Kiwis stay healthy and live longer.”