Preventing dementia through exercise and physical activity: A review

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2 Citations (Scopus)


The fastest growing age segment in the world will soon be adults (65 years and older), a high risk group for developing dementia. However, to date, no effective treatments or intervention strategies are available to fully ameliorate this condition. Dementia and the morbidity of cardiovascular diseases have been indirectly correlated with low physical activity. Thus, the aim of this article is to review studies on dementia prevention and its relationship to physical activity and health behavior promotion. We first discuss the risk of dementia and dementia-related diseases and the factors affecting the development of cardiovascular diseases and dementia; we then discuss the benefits of participation in physical activity for dementia prevention. The results suggest that adequate physical activity can prevent dementia. However, factors including gender, genetic type, exercise type, and social factors affect this relationship. On the basis of the studies in our review, we conclude that: (1) Disease prevention through physical activity is not a popular concept in our country, and so we need to inform average people about the benefits of exercise and encourage them to engage in exercise; (2) the level of exercise by senior citizens in the community should be increased to improve its physiological, psychological, and social health benefits. Taken together, we conclude that exercise can lower the risk of dementia and improve the health of an aging population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)268-277
Number of pages10
JournalTaiwan Journal of Public Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Aug

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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