Strong Friendships Found to Keep Brains Young

Study found social networks keep brains young

A new study has found that SuperAgers, "people who have passed 80 but have held onto mental faculties, particularly episodic memory, as acute as a typical person in their 50s or 60s," reported. 

While there is no one particular factor to ensure that one maintains their mental faculties, Dr. Emily Rogalski of Northwestern University and her colleagues argue that friendships are a contributing factor. The study they recently published in PLOS One found "that maintaining strong social networks seems to be linked to slower cognitive decline," Rogalski said in a statement

The study compared 31 SuperAgers with 19 people of average cognitive ability for their age. They were given a 42-item questionnaire "asking them to rate themselves on a six-point scale. The one significant difference was how much better SuperAgers rated their relations with others."

"Rogalski and her co-author also note research on longitudinal studies of broad populations which suggest that; 'Positive social relationships influence subsequent cognitive performance while the reverse does not appear to be true.'"