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Welcome to the Minds Refined Research Page! Here you'll find articles describing the latest scientific research on brain health and mental fitness. The stories are grouped into the following categories: Cognitive Exercise, Physical Exercise, Lifestyles & Social Interaction, Diet & Nutrition, Neurogenesis & Neuroplasticity, and Alzheimer's Disease. All links are external to MindsRefined.com and will open in a new window. If you run across a story that you think we should include, please let us know.

Cognitive Exercise
More Brain Research Suggests 'Use It Or Lose It'. [Science Daily/University of Queensland; Feb. 12, 2008]. Neuroscientists at The University of Queensland have just published findings which add more weight to the "use it or lose it" model for brain function. "It appears that if a cell is not appropriately stimulated by other cells it self-destructs." read full article.
Older Adults with Mild Memory Impairment Still Benefit from Cognitive Training. [NIH; Nov. 30, 2007]. Older adults with pre-existing mild memory impairment benefit as much as those with normal memory function from certain forms of cognitive training... These findings could indicate the ability for older adults to maintain skills that allow them to carry out daily tasks and lead a higher quality of life. read full article.
Brain Exercise Can Enhance Memory, Thinking, In Older Adults. [Science Daily/The Gerontological Society of America; Nov. 20, 2007]. Doing the right kind of brain exercise can enhance memory and other cognitive abilities in older adults. read full article.
Hand Gestures Dramatically Improve Learning. [EurkAlert/University of Rochester; July 25, 2007]. Kids asked to physically gesture at math problems are nearly three times more likely than non-gesturers to remember what they've learned. read full article.
Attention Training May Help Older Adults Improve Concentration. [Science Daily/Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center; June 17, 2007]. Results from a recent study suggest that attention training can change brain activity so older adults can block out distractions and improve concentration. read full article.
Frequent Brain Stimulation In Old Age Reduces Risk Of Alzheimer's Disease. [Science Daily/American Academy of Neurology; June 28, 2007]. The study found that a cognitively active person in old age was 2.6 times less likely to develop dementia and Alzheimer's disease than a cognitively inactive person in old age. read full article.
Cognitive Training Boosts Daily Living Skills in Healthy Seniors. [Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research Foundation; January 2, 2007]. "...findings suggest that regular challenges to boost memory and reasoning may help to keep seniors mentally vital and allow them to continue to live independently...". read full article.
New Hope For Alzheimer's: Memory Restored In Mice Through Enriched Environment. [Science Daily/Howard Hughes Medical Institute; April 30, 2007]. Mice whose brains had lost a large number of neurons due to neurodegeneration regained long-term memories and the ability to learn after their surroundings were enriched with toys and other sensory stimuli... read full article.
Computer 'Games' Enhance Mental Function In Patients With Alzheimer's. [Science Daily/University of Pittsburgh Medical Center; October 24, 2006]. Computer-based tasks aimed at increasing mental activity and enhancing mental function can improve cognition in patients with Alzheimer's disease... read full article.
Games, Puzzles May Help Aging Minds Stay Sharp. [Arizona Republic, July 24, 2006]. There is growing evidence that people who engage in puzzles, board games and other mentally stimulating activities can reduce the risk of memory loss and dementia as they age. read full article.
Computer Games Could Save Your Brain. [BioEd Online, July 24, 2006]. Researchers to check whether FreeCell can detect early signs of Alzheimer's. read full article.
Video Games for the Elderly: An Answer to Dementia or a Marketing Tool? [The Guardian; March 7, 2006]. Nintendo product proves addictive to over-45s anxious to ward-off effects of old age. read full article.
Training Benefits Brains in Older People, Counters Aging Factors. [EurekAlert; February 16, 2006]. New research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign shows that training re-ignites key areas of the brain, offsetting some age-related declines and boosting performance. read full article.
Mental Exercise Nearly Halves Dementia Risk. [MSNBC; January 25, 2006]. Staying mentally and physically active throughout life is the best way to keep the mind sharp and reduce the risks of developing dementia... read full article.
Mental Declines Can Be Reversed, Report Shows. [Science Daily/University of Alberta; September 16, 2005]. "Can we reverse mental declines? Well, for most of us, the answer is yes" says Dr. Dennis Foth, a professor at the University of Alberta. ... read full article.
Mind Games May Trump Alzheimer's; Study Cites Effects Of Bridge, Chess. [The Washington Post; June 19, 2003]. "Using the mind actually causes rewiring of the brain, sprouting new synapses -- it may even cause the generation of new neurons." read full article.
Use It Or Lose It? Study Suggests Mentally Stimulating Activities May Reduce Alzheimer's Risk. [alzheimersupport.com; March 3, 2002]. Computer-based tasks aimed at increasing mental activity and enhancing mental function can improve cognition in patients with Alzheimer's disease... read full article.
National Study Shows Mind-Training Exercises Help Healthy Seniors Stay Mentally Sharp. [University of Florida; November 1, 2002]. Mind exercises can help healthy individuals over age 65 improve their memory, concentration and problem-solving skills, researchers report at the close of a federally funded study involving 2,802 seniors at six sites around the nation. read full article.
Physical Exercise
Moderate Level Of Aerobic Fitness May Lower Stroke Risk. [Science Daily/American Heart Association; Feb. 24, 2008]. A moderate level of aerobic fitness can significantly reduce stroke risk for men and women. "Fitness has a protective effect regardless of the presence or absence of other stroke risk factors, including family history of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol levels and high body mass index." read full article.
Mild Exercise May Counter Dementia. [Time; Dec. 20, 2007]. Moderate physical activity - even an unhurried 30-minute stroll a day - may diminish the risk for vascular dementia among the elderly. read full article.
Pedometers Motivate People With Diabetes To Walk More. [Science Daily/University of Michigan Health System; Nov. 20, 2007]. The use of a pedometer and a Web site that tracked physical activity levels proved to be powerful motivators for people with diabetes who participated in a recent walking study. read full article.
Sitting May Increase Risk Of Disease. [Science Daily/University of Missouri-Columbia; Nov. 20, 2007]. Health professionals advise that at least 30 minutes of activity at least 5 days a week will counteract health concerns, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri-Columbia say... that what people do in the other 15 and a half hours of their waking day is just as important, or more so, than the time they spend actively exercising. read full article.
Stronger, Faster, Smarter. [Newsweek; March 26, 2007]. New science shows that exercise boosts brainpower and may offer hope in the battle against Alzheimer's. read full article.
Exercise Helps Sustain Mental Activity as we Age; and May Prevent Dementia-like Illnesses. [American Psychological Association; August 11, 2006]. Based on a review of studies on exercise and its effect on brain functioning in human and animal populations, researchers find that physical exercise may slow aging's effects and help people maintain cognitive abilities well into older age. read full article.
Light Exercise Brings Big Cut in Alzheimer's Risk. [The Guardian; January 17, 2006]. Exercising three times a week in later life could dramatically reduce the risk of Alzheimer's... read full article.
To Ward Off Alzheimer's, Exercise. [Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research Foundation; October 3, 2005]. Want to remain mentally alert into old age? Regular exercise during your middle years may lower your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease... read full article.
Lifestyles & Social Interaction
Older People Are Happy: Life Begins At 40 And 50 And 60. [Science Daily/Queen's University, Belfast; Feb. 11, 2008]. "The research found that, contrary to common belief, old age does not mean a decline in happiness - older people are just as happy as younger people. Whilst many young people associate old age with doom and gloom, this is not the case." read full article.
Pilot Program Helps Boost Seniors' Activity Levels, Quality Of Life. [Science Daily/UCLA; Nov. 19, 2007]. Older adults often carry a deeply ingrained belief that inactive, sedentary lives are an inevitable part of aging. But this mindset is not just wrong, it can be changed--with positive physical and mental health results. read full article.
Study Examines Impact of Living Alone. [Science Daily/Economic & Social Research Council; Nov. 19, 2007]. Key findings from the research [suggest that] older people living alone were more likely to be depressed, lonely and unhappy and to be less satisfied with life than those living with a spouse. read full article.
10 Minutes of Talking has a Mental Payoff. [EurkAlert/University of Michigan; Oct. 29, 2007]. Spending just 10 minutes talking to another person can help improve your memory and performance. ... The findings suggest that visiting with a friend or neighbor may be just as helpful in staying sharp as doing a daily crossword puzzle. read full article.
Diet & Nutrition
Consumption Of Fruits May Reduce Risk Of Alzheimer's Disease. [Science Daily/Journal of Food Science; Jan. 31, 2008]. Apples, bananas, and oranges... are important sources of vitamins, minerals, and fiber... [and may] also protect against neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's Disease. read full article.
Folate and B12 may influence cognition in seniors. [EurkAlert/Tufts University; February 9, 2007]. "Folate and vitamin B12, two important nutrients for the development of healthy nerves and blood cells, may work together to protect cognitive function among seniors...". read full article.
Neurogenesis & Neuroplasticity
More Brain Research Suggests 'Use It Or Lose It'. [Science Daily/University of Queensland; Feb. 12, 2008]. Neuroscientists at The University of Queensland have just published findings which add more weight to the "use it or lose it" model for brain function. "It appears that if a cell is not appropriately stimulated by other cells it self-destructs." read full article.
New Book Defines Promising Young Field of Adult Neurogenesis. [EurkAlert/Cold Spring Harbor; Nov. 27, 2007]. Studies of the birth and incorporation of neurons into the brains of mature animals - a process known as adult neurogenesis - promise intriguing insights into the mechanisms of normal brain function and into the causes of depression and other psychiatric disorders.. read full article.
New Adult Brain Cells May Be Central To Lifelong Learning. [Science Daily/John Hopkins University; May 25, 2007]. "adult neurogenesis may represent not merely a replacement mechanism for lost neurons, but instead an ongoing developmental process that continuously rejuvenates the mature nervous system by offering expanded capacity of plasticity in response to experience throughout life." read full article.
Alzheimer's Disease
Mild Alzheimer's Patients Show Rapid Decline In Financial Skills And Increased Vulnerability To Fraud. [Science Daily/University of Alabama at Birmingham; Feb. 11, 2008]. New research shows that patients with mild Alzheimer's disease have a dramatic decline in their ability to make financial decisions. The findings have strong implications for caregivers and health care providers in the areas of estate planning and fraud prevention. read full article.
Consumption Of Fruits May Reduce Risk Of Alzheimer's Disease. [Science Daily/Journal of Food Science; Jan. 31, 2008]. Apples, bananas, and oranges... are important sources of vitamins, minerals, and fiber... [and may] also protect against neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's Disease.. read full article.
Older Adults with Mild Memory Impairment Still Benefit from Cognitive Training. [NIH; Nov. 30, 2007]. Older adults with pre-existing mild memory impairment benefit as much as those with normal memory function from certain forms of cognitive training that don't rely on memorization. These findings could indicate the ability for older adults to maintain skills that allow them to carry out daily tasks and lead a higher quality of life. read full article.
High Blood Pressure Associated With Risk For Mild Cognitive Impairment. [Science Daily/JAMA; Dec 12. 2007]. High blood pressure appears to be associated with an increased risk for mild cognitive impairment, a condition that involves difficulties with thinking and learning. read full article.
Dementia Screening In Primary Care: Is It Time? [Science Daily/Indiana University; Nov. 28, 2008]. Primary care physicians should focus on "dementia red flags" rather than routinely screen individuals with no dementia symptoms just because they've reached a certain age. read full article.
Staving Off Alzheimer's Disease With The Right Diet & Prescriptions. [Science Daily/Society for Neuroscience; Nov. 13, 2007]. New studies reveal the effects of environmental substances on the promotion or slowing of symptoms associated with Alzheimer's disease. [Antihypertension drugs, fish oil, and caffeine provide] reason for cautious optimism [about] treating what until now has been a devastating and untreatable illness. read full article.
Chronic Stress Can Steal Years From Caregivers' Lifetimes. [Science Daily/Ohio State University; Sept. 20, 2007]. The chronic stress that spouses and children develop while caring for Alzheimer's disease patients may shorten the caregivers' lives by as much as four to eight years. read full article.
Drug Improves Symptoms Of Severe Alzheimer's Disease. [Science Daily; Aug. 30, 2007]. According to a recent study published in the journal Neurology, a drug initially used to treat mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease improved the memory and global function of people with severe Alzheimer's disease and was safe and effective. read full article.
Alzheimer's Disease to Quadruple Worldwide by 2050. [EurkAlert/Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health; June 10, 2007]. "We face a looming global epidemic of Alzheimer's disease as the world's population ages," said the study's lead author. read full article.
Frequent Brain Stimulation In Old Age Reduces Risk Of Alzheimer's Disease. [Science Daily/American Academy of Neurology; June 28, 2007]. The study found that a cognitively active person in old age was 2.6 times less likely to develop dementia and Alzheimer's disease than a cognitively inactive person in old age. read full article.
New Hope For Alzheimer's: Memory Restored In Mice Through Enriched Environment. [Science Daily/Howard Hughes Medical Institute; April 30, 2007]. Mice whose brains had lost a large number of neurons due to neurodegeneration regained long-term memories and the ability to learn after their surroundings were enriched with toys and other sensory stimuli... read full article.
Memory Complaints May Signal Brain Loss. [Medscape; Sept. 12, 2006]. Cognitive complaints in older adults may indicate underlying neurodegenerative changes, even in the presence of normal neuropsychological test results. read full article.
Computer 'Games' Enhance Mental Function In Patients With Alzheimer's. [Science Daily/University of Pittsburgh Medical Center; October 24, 2006]. Computer-based tasks aimed at increasing mental activity and enhancing mental function can improve cognition in patients with Alzheimer's disease... read full article.
Mental Exercise Nearly Halves Dementia Risk. [MSNBC; January 25, 2006]. Staying mentally and physically active throughout life is the best way to keep the mind sharp and reduce the risks of developing dementia... read full article.
Light Exercise Brings Big Cut in Alzheimer's Risk. [The Guardian; January 17, 2006]. Exercising three times a week in later life could dramatically reduce the risk of Alzheimer's... read full article.
Can You Prevent Alzheimer's Disease? [Time; Jan. 8, 2006]. ...Several studies have found that folks who regularly engage in mentally challenging activities - like reading, doing crossword puzzles or playing chess - seem less likely to develop dementia later in life. read full article.
To Ward Off Alzheimer's, Exercise. [Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research Foundation; October 3, 2005]. Want to remain mentally alert into old age? Regular exercise during your middle years may lower your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease... read full article.
Mind Games May Trump Alzheimer's; Study Cites Effects Of Bridge, Chess. [The Washington Post; June 19, 2003]. "Using the mind actually causes rewiring of the brain, sprouting new synapses -- it may even cause the generation of new neurons." read full article.
Use It Or Lose It? Study Suggests Mentally Stimulating Activities May Reduce Alzheimer's Risk. [alzheimersupport.com; March 3, 2002]. Computer-based tasks aimed at increasing mental activity and enhancing mental function can improve cognition in patients with Alzheimer's disease... read full article.

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Newsweek

New science shows that exercise boosts brainpower and may offer hope in the battle against Alzheimer's. ... read full article.

Read Articles About... Cognitive Exercise
Physical Exercise
Lifestyles &
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Diet & Nutrition
Neurogenesis &
     Neuroplasticity

Alzheimer's Disease