If older adults read the newspaper every morning, write in a journal or make a visit to the theater every now and then, they may want to consider taking an IQ test. After all, any one of these actions has the potential to keep their minds sharp, according to a new study from researchers at the Rush University Medical Center and Illinois Institute of Technology.
The researchers worked with data from 152 elderly participants with a mean age of 81 years old. These individuals, who did not suffer from mild cognitive impairment or dementia, were asked to share how often they participated in what were considered to be mentally engaging activities, such as playing board games and writing letters.
"Reading the newspaper, writing letters, visiting a library, attending a play or playing games, such as chess or checkers, are all simple activities that can contribute to a healthier brain," said Konstantinos Arfanakis, who led the study.
Based on their findings, the researchers believe that keeping the mind engaged later in life through simple activities does have a positive impact on brain health.