Entries for month: October 2011
A study just published in Arch Intern Med. 2011;171(18):1625-1633. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2011.445 assessed the use of vitamin and mineral supplements in relation to total mortality in 38 772 older women in the Iowa Women's Health Study; mean age was 61.6 years at baseline in 1986. The study revealed that in older women, several commonly used dietary vitamin and mineral supplements may be associated with increased total mortality risk; this association is strongest with supplemental iron. In contrast to the findings of many studies, calcium is associated with decreased risk.
A 2007 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association linked vitamin E, vitamin A and beta- carotene to higher death rates. Another, published in the same year in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, linked multivitamins to an increase in prostate cancer.
Here is my take.
A recent study published in the journal “Nature“ 2011; 476 : 210 – 3, clearly demonstrates that memory declines starting from mid-age and progressing into older age. The authors (Wang, et al) measured neuronal firing rate of neurons (brain cells) as an expression of these cells’ activity in monkeys. Almost any daily activity requires the temporary retention of some type of information (working memory). Working memory is critically important for a variety of cognitive functions including language comprehension, reasoning, decision making and planning. So anything that will help prevent or at least delay age associated memory decline can benefit anybody above the age of thirty. Pharmacological interventions are being investigated. In the mean time, there are several recent studies that show that cognitive training and a variety of exercises are very effective in slowing down age associated memory decline.