US News & World Report
by Steven Reinberg
Losing memory as you age is a sign of mild cognitive impairment, which can be a gateway to dementia or Alzheimer's disease. But using your brain can help keep it sharp, and it's never too late to start reaping the benefits, researchers say. Why keeping mentally active has this effect isn't known, but it might be that the brain responds positively to increased use, said senior researcher Dr. Yonas Geda, a psychiatrist at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz. "It's like watering a flower," he said. It's also possible that people who engage in mental activities also have other good behaviors, such as exercising and eating a healthy diet, which benefit brain health, Geda said.
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