The Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability (FINGER) has released new research showing that lifestyle interventions can have a long-lasting, positive impact on heart and brain health.
By adhering to the two-year intervention (increased exercise, improved diet, cognitive training, and vascular monitoring in a social setting), participants saw fewer incidence of cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, transient ischaemic attack (“mini stroke”) or coronary heart events during the following seven years. These results were even more pronounced for those with a history of previous cardiovascular events, suggesting that those at greatest risk also showed the greatest benefits from the lifestyle intervention.
“The results show that a lifestyle intervention offered to the elderly has versatile health benefits, and the benefits continue after the active study period”, says Jenni Lehtisalo, Senior Researcher at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).
The FINGER study is the basis of FBHI’s approach to healthy aging, with positive results such as these supporting the ability of simple lifestyle changes to improve health in later life. Results from the study can be found here.