A study spanning 30 years has found that men with healthy lifestyles enjoy longer, healthier lives and reduced likelihood of cognitive impairment as they age. In the Caerphilly Prospective Study, 2235 men aged 45 to 59, were enrolled in 1979 to take part in a long-term evaluation. Over the following three decades, they were repeatedly questioned and examined, and it has been found that those following at least four out of five healthy behaviours (regular exercise, not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, healthy eating & moderate drinking), showed:
– a 50% reduction in diabetes and vascular disease;
– a 60% reduction in cognitive impairment and dementia;
– a 60% reduction in all-cause mortality.
Exercise conferred the strongest protective effect against cognitive impairment and dementia. Only 5% of men though, adhered to at least four healthy behaviours, with those adhering to all five, amounting to just 1%.
(Healthy lifestyles reduce the incidence of chronic disease and dementia: evidence from Caerphilly cohort study. PLoS One, December 2013.)