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Use Your Brain A LOT More Often or Risk Losing It

There's no better or enjoyable ways to protect your mind and memory as you age than to take advantage of the many simpler, safer brain-teasers I often share with you, none of which involve taking dangerous prescription drugs. Apparently, the Journal of the American Medical Association finally agrees, according to a new study.

Some 3,000 seniors from six cities (ranging in size from Boston to State College, Pa.) participated in the five-year study involving short sessions of "brain exercise" over six weeks. Some patients took classes involving memory, reasoning or faster mental processing then refresher classes at the one- and three-year marks, while others were only tested, but weren't exposed to mental training.

No surprise, seniors benefited from exposure to such classes, especially those taking speed training as 90 percent showed immediate improvements. Moreover, those improvements lasted the duration of the study, and, particularly, with those who took refresher classes.

Keeping your mind active, however, is only one of many things you can do to prevent Alzheimer's. Other guidelines for reducing your Alzheimer's risks sharply:

Journal of the American Medical Association, Vol. 296, No. 23, December 20, 2006: 2805-2814

Yahoo News December 19, 2006