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The Sealy Center on Aging supports a number of events related to research, education, and community service throughout the year focusing on improving the health and well-being of the elderly. Follow @UTMB_SCoA on Twitter and visit our Facebook Page for announcements.

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Social and Leisure Activities May Play a Protective Role in Cognitive Aging of Older Mexican Adults

Nov 20, 2023, 08:00 AM by SCOA

A new study by researchers including Michael Robertson, Brian Downer, Paul Schulz, Rafael Samper-Ternent, Elizabeth Lyons , and Sadaf Arefi Milani looks at social and leisure activities in older Mexican adults. 

This study, conducted in Mexico, aimed to explore the relationship between social and leisure activities and cognitive functioning in older adults over a 6-year period. The research involved 9,091 participants aged 60 and older, using latent transition analyses to identify distinct cognitive statuses and model transitions between them.

At the outset, four cognitive statuses were identified: normal cognition (43%), temporal disorientation (30%), perceptual-motor function impairment (7%), and learning and memory impairment (20%). The study revealed that engaging in various social and leisure activities was linked to a range of cognitive outcomes. Participation in these activities was associated with reduced odds of death and unfavorable cognitive transitions, as well as increased odds of positive transitions.

The findings suggest that popular social and leisure activities may play a protective role in cognitive aging, potentially influencing the development of enjoyable and effective health interventions. Understanding the impact of these activities on common patterns of cognitive functioning could contribute to the design of interventions that promote both cognitive health and overall well-being in older adults.

Read the study at PubMed: Social and Leisure Activities Predict Transitions in Cognitive Functioning in Older Mexican Adults: A Latent Transition Analysis of the Mexican Health and Aging Study

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