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A Study Shows That Older People Became Younger, With ‘Meaningful’ Mental and Physical Improvement Since 1990

Posted by on September 25, 2020 in Sci-Tech, Science with 0 Comments

Finnish research has discovered the functional ability of older people is much better today, compared to people of the same age three decades ago.

This finding was observed in a study conducted at the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences at the University of Jyväskylä.

The study compared the physical and cognitive performance of Finnish people between the ages of 75 and 80 nowadays with those of people the same age in the 1990s.

“Performance-based measurements describe how older people manage in their daily life, and at the same time, the measurements reflect one’s functional age,” says the principal investigator of the study, Professor Taina Rantanen, in a statement.

Among men and women between the ages of 75 and 80, muscle strength, walking speed, reaction speed, verbal fluency, reasoning, and working memory are nowadays significantly better than they were in people of the same age born earlier. In lung function tests, however, differences between cohorts were not observed.

“Higher physical activity and increased body size explained the better walking speed and muscle strength among the later-born cohort,” says doctoral student Kaisa Koivunen, “whereas the most important underlying factor behind the cohort differences in cognitive performance was longer education.”

Postdoctoral researcher Matti Munukka continues, “The cohort of 75- and 80-year-olds born later have grown up and lived in a different world than did their counterparts born three decades ago. There have been many favorable changes.

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