Episodic memory function is affected by lifestyle factors: a 14-year follow-up study in an elderly population

Ruth Klaming*, Jacopo Annese, Dick J. Veltman, Hannie C. Comijs

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Understanding the relationship between memory function and lifestyle offers great opportunities for promoting beneficial lifestyle choices to foster healthy cognitive aging and for the development of intervention programs for older adults. We studied a cohort of older adults (age 65 and older) enrolled in the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam, an ongoing prospective population-based research project. A total of 1,966 men and women participated in an episodic memory test every 3 years over a period of 14 years. Lifestyle habits were repeatedly assessed using self-report measures. Physical activity, light-to-moderate alcohol consumption, difficulties staying asleep, and social engagement were associated with better memory function over the course of 14 years. In contrast, smoking and long sleep duration were associated with worse memory function. These findings suggest that certain lifestyle factors can have long-term protective or harmful effects on memory function in aging individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)528-542
Number of pages15
JournalAging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition
Volume24
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Sep 2017

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