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Exercisers Have Reduced Risk of Dementia, Says Study

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Adults fear Alzheimer's disease. It is the most common form of dementia for which there is no cure.
But now there's news about one possible way to reduce the risk of developing dementia later in life. It's all based on a study that started back in 1970 at a community health clinic.
The study, called the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study, looked at the fitness levels of almost 29,000 healthy adults who were in generally good health. Starting in 1999, researchers reviewed the data of eligible Medicare patients. They searched for anyone who had made at least one Medicare benefit claim with a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease, senile dementia, pre-senile dementia or vascular dementia.
Results show that patients who were physically fit earlier in life were much less likely to develop dementia than those who were less fit.
While the study's results do not provide proof that exercise wards off Alzheimer's, staying fit may reduce the risk of contracting the debilitating disease. And it could just entice more adults to exercise, which is already linked to many other health benefits.   

This study's findings were published Monday in Annals of Internal Medicine.

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