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Recent Brain HealthPosts

Believe this? Cynics At Higher Risk for Dementia.

Posted on 05/28/2014 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Brain Health | Bulletin TodayIf you’re a cynic, you’ll probably disregard this, but researchers say that cynical mistrust will triple your risk of developing dementia. Scoff all you want, but researchers in Finland who tested 1,449 older adults (average age: 71) found that highly cynical people were three times more likely to develop dementia than those with a more trusting, optimistic personality, according to a study published today in the journal Neurology. In other words, “your personality may affect your brain health,” explained lead …

Can Young Blood Reverse Aging in Older Brains?

Posted on 05/6/2014 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Brain Health | Bulletin TodayWhat’s the secret of youth? It may be all in the blood. Three new studies published Sunday showed that when the blood of young mice was put into the systems of older mice, the effects of aging were reversed, improving both muscles and brains. Researchers will now race to find practical implications for older human brains. One of the study authors plans to start a trial this year, giving young blood to Alzheimer’s patients to see if it can reverse …

How Much You Sleep Now Can Affect Your Memory Later

Posted on 05/2/2014 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Brain Health | Bulletin TodayLike most Americans, I rarely get the doctor-recommended eight hours of sleep every night. Usually, I get too little sleep. Occasionally, I get too much. So I worried when I saw a new study that found that how much women sleep in middle age can affect their memory later in life. Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston evaluated the link between sleep duration and memory in more than 15,000 women age 70 and older who were  stroke and …

Sleep Disorder Linked to Parkinson’s, Dementia

Posted on 04/23/2014 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Brain Health | Bulletin TodayThrashing about while you’re asleep may be a sign of something more troubling than mere restlessness: It could be a predictor of brain disease. A new study suggests that 80 to 90 percent of people who suffer from rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behavior disorder will eventually develop Parkinson’s or another brain disease. What’s REM sleep behavior disorder? It’s a condition that causes people to act out vivid, intense, even violent dreams. People who have it often yell, punch and kick …

The Surprising Good News About Getting Older

Posted on 04/22/2014 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Brain Health | Bulletin TodayThe headline in this morning’s Wall Street Journal caught my eye:  “We Actually Get Nicer With Age.” Wow! So much for the stereotype of the grumpy old man and the cranky old lady. According to the article, as people get older, they report increases in positive traits such as conscientiousness, agreeableness and emotional stability. What’s more, negative traits — like neuroticism, anger and anxiety — seem to decline. Overall,  as we age we become “more responsible, more agreeable and more …

When Are You Over-the-Hill? Try Age 24

Posted on 04/15/2014 by |Personal Health and Well-being | Comments

Brain Health | Bulletin TodayThink you should worry about your brain slowing down post-age 50? Too late. It’s already started at age 24. Or at least that’s what a Canadian study of players of a hypercompetitive computer game has found. Apparently our cognitive motor skills — meaning the speed at which we process something and then react to it — peak by age 24, then begin to diminish slowly. But don’t be depressed! We make up for it by becoming more cunning and crafty, …