New Research Suggests That High Inflammation During Young Adulthood Is Linked With Cognitive Decline In Middle Age

The results revealed that just 10% of participants in the low inflammation group performed poorly during processing speed and memory tests. Yet, among the moderate and high inflammation groups, approximately 20% of participants performed poorly.

Other factors, such as age and physical activity, were also accounted for. Still, individuals with higher inflammation had deficits in problem-solving, working memory, and impulse control.

Additionally, higher levels of inflammation were linked to other factors, such as higher BMI, physical inactivity, and smoking.

These findings indicate that inflammation during young adulthood may predict cognitive performance in midlife, carrying possibly significant implications for brain health in the long term.

“Inflammation plays a significant role in cognitive aging and may begin in early adulthood. There is likely a direct and indirect effect of inflammation on cognition,” said Kirstine Yaffe, a senior author of the study.

However, according to Yaffe, there are things individuals can do to reduce inflammation – including quitting smoking and becoming more active – which may be key for prevention.

The study results suggest that dementia prevention should begin earlier than previously believed and pave the way for exploring how early-life factors can impact brain health in the long term.

To read the study’s complete findings, which have since been published in Neurology, visit the link here.

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