Regular diet and exercise are encouraged for anyone, no matter their age or health. But a recent study found that moderate exercise in the form of a one-hour walk three times weekly has particular benefits for those suffering from dementia .
Seemingly countless studies have been performed on the benefits of exercise in Alzheimer’s patients, but very few have been done for dementia.
Conducted at the University of British Columbia, the study focused on older individuals with a diagnoses of mild vascular cognitive impairment – also known as vascular dementia. The exercise group participated in monitored, brisk walks on site three times a week.
Compared to the control group, the exercise patients displayed more efficient brain activity and cognitive thinking skills after the six-month study concluded. They also showed marked improvements in blood pressure. Researchers concluded that regular exercise in the early stages of vascular dementia could make a a notable difference in the progression of the disease.
It is important to note that individuals who suffer from severe dementia should never exercise alone, and only with permission from their primary physician.