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Memory Myth About Elderly

Memory Myth About Elderly

Since its inception as a field of rational scientific study, medicine has accepted the degeneration of brain function in elderly people as a natural occurrence.

This deterioration was thoroughly documented with “hard” findings–as we age, our brains shrink, grow lighter, and lose millions of neurons every year. We have our full complement of neurons by age 2, and by age 30, the number starts to decline. The loss of any single brain cell is permanent, since neurons do not regenerate.

On the basis of this well-known fact, brain decline seemed to be scientifically valid; sadly but inevitably, to grow old must lead to memory loss, decreases reasoning ability, impaired intelligence, and related symptoms.

These time-honored assumptions, however, have now been shown to be wrong. Careful study of healthy elderly people has revealed that 80 percent of healthy Americans, barring psychological distress (such as loneliness, depression, or lack of outside stimulation), suffer no significant memory loss as they age.

The secret depends on habits of mind, not the circuitry in the nervous system. As long as a person stays mentally active, they will remain as intelligent as in youth and middle age.

Adapted from Quantum Healing: Exploring the Frontiers of Mind/Body Medicine by Deepak Chopra (Bantam Books, 1990).

Read more: Spirit, Deepak Chopra's Tips, , , , ,

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Deepak Chopra

Acknowledged as one of the world's greatest leaders in the field of mind body medicine, Deepak Chopra, M.D. continues to transform our understanding of the meaning of health. Chopra is known as a prolific author of over 49 books with 12 best sellers on mind-body health, quantum mechanics, spirituality, and peace. A global force in the field of human empowerment, Dr. Chopra's books have been published in more than 35 languages with more than 20 million copies in print.

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6:21AM PDT on Jun 9, 2013

I agree. My grandmother, who is 99 now, kept her brain fit for years by doing crossword puzzles.

6:13AM PDT on Jun 9, 2013

Crossword puzzles are a great way to keep your mind active.

7:02PM PST on Mar 5, 2013


4:37AM PST on Feb 20, 2013

There needs to be more research into this. My grandma Gargas has a bad memory and can't remember most things.

5:12AM PST on Feb 4, 2013

Thank you

8:23AM PST on Jan 19, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

10:20AM PST on Dec 28, 2012

When I consider many of the people who have aged beyond 70yrs., it is apparent that so many are no longer involved with reading new material for the latest and greatest information, and also, many have few social ties to challenge their daily skills of problem solving and general ability to keep a lively dialogue. While economics play a significant role in how active some of the population are in the plus + years, we can still seek stimulation in frugal ways to maintain our mental prowess and keep that spark of 'new thought' alive and well > the synapse of energy that can make us as lively at any beautiful and marvelous age!!!

11:14PM PST on Dec 17, 2012

Good to know, I see it in my 91 year old father who still does the NY Times crossword everyday, and reads it from end to end. Keeping the mind active is the key.

8:22PM PST on Dec 17, 2012

There is a super ...............vs. suer

8:21PM PST on Dec 17, 2012

There is a suer fantastic and the best "brain" show I have ever seen on PBS called Super Brain with Rudy Tanzi. He is a neurosurgeon. If you get a chance to see it, I would highly recommend it for anyone interested on brain health.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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