(WYTV) – Do you find yourself forgetting where you left your keys or where you parked your car? One way to preserve memory as we get older may be making more friends.
Doctors kind of suspected this happens but weren’t sure why.
Researchers at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center looked into this by studying older mice.
Some they kept in pairs, while some had a wider social circle.
In memory tests, the social mice did better and actually had better brains.
“The mice who had more friends, who lived in a larger group, had less inflammation in their brain. So that’s a sign of a healthier brain in aging,” Dr. Elizabeth Kirby said.
The lesson for the rest of us? Build your own social network in retirement. Your brain will thank you for it.
It’s just like any other form of health. If you ignore using your noggin, it will deteriorate and if it does, you’re going to have to deal with the penalty of not taking care of it.
The next step — find out how being social affects the brain on a molecular level.
Maybe there’s a chemical process we can tap into to better protect brain function as people get older.