When it comes to establishing a healthy lifestyle, the earlier a person can start, the better. This is true with laying down healthy dietary habits like controlling portion size, limiting sugars, making healthy food choices, but also when it comes to getting physically active. And now we have even more incentive to get kids moving, as new research shows that physical activity in the teenage years or earlier can help stave off dementia like Alzheimer's Disease in older age.
In the study, it was found that older adults 65 years and over were less likely to show signs of cognitive impairment if they had been active as teens. According to one of the researchers, "More and more people are starting to recognize physical activity as one of the most promising means to prevent cognitive impairment and dementia. And what this study adds is that it's not only important in mid and late life — that we really have to start as early as possible."
In Canada, we have a multitude of information and resources regarding physical activity in youth - just take a look at the ParticipACTION program for more information.
Find out more about this study by reading the article called "Teen exercise could lower dementia risk at 65" from CBC News (June 30, 2010).