After following more than 1,000 people for an average of 12 years and assessing them every three, U.S. researchers suggest that puzzles and crosswords might delay the onset of dementia, although they can expect a more rapid decline once it sets in. The team from Rush University Medical Center in Chicago looked at 1,157 people aged over 65, giving them a maximum of five points based on how often they engaged in different activities involving information processing. This included listening to the radio, watching TV, reading a book or doing a puzzle, or visiting the museum. For each additional point, those without a diagnosed impairment saw a 50 per cent slower decline in brain function, but the 148 people who were diagnosed wth Alzheimer’s saw a 42 per cent faster decline for each point.
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