Physical activity, cognitive decline, and risk of dementia: 28 year follow-up of Whitehall II cohort study

BMJ 2017;357:j2709

This prospective cohort study aims to test the hypotheses that physical activity in midlife is not associated with a reduced risk of dementia and that the preclinical phase of dementia is characterised by a decline in physical activity.  The study finds no evidence of a neuroprotective effect of physical activity. Previous findings showing a lower risk of dementia in physically active people may be attributable to reverse causation—that is, due to a decline in physical activity levels in the preclinical phase of dementia.

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