Scientists found out which personality traits can be effective against Alzheimer’s disease

A team of scientists from the University of Geneva and the University Hospitals of Geneva (Switzerland) conducted research among a group of elderly people and found that certain personality traits could protect against the development of Alzheimer's disease. For example, older people who can defend themselves and their beliefs, as well as those with natural curiosity, demonstrate better cognitive abilities and more brain volume than their peers of a different nature. The article has been published in the journal Neurobiology of Aging.

For the study, Swiss researchers have attracted a large group of people over 65 years. Various methods, including structural brain imaging, were used to assess amyloid accumulation and measure brain volume. Volunteers also passed a series of cognitive tests and received psychological evaluations from specialists.

The results surprised the authors: it turned out that less compliant older people, who were nonconformists, were not afraid of conflict and defended their beliefs, had a more secure brain and were less exposed to the development of Alzheimer's disease.

Scientists have also identified another personality trait that had a protective effect on the brain: open-mindedness. However, it was expected, the authors of the study note, because it is already known that the desire to learn and interest in everything new - the phenomena that contribute to slow the aging process of the brain.

So far, experts can not explain the biological mechanisms underlying this connection. Nor is it known how these results can be used to prevent Alzheimer's disease, as it is difficult for older people to work on their character to improve health in this way. However, the authors argue that conclusions about personal characteristics must be considered in order to better predict the development of the disease.

March 16, 2020, 11:06 a.m.

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