High-sodium intake and a low level of physical activity can be detrimental to cognitive function in the elderly, says a study conducted by Canadian researchers.
Researchers followed the sodium consumption and physical activity levels of 1,262 healthy older men and women over three years. Senior participants were assessed on a food frequency questionnaire they each completed.
“The results of our study showed that a diet high in sodium, combined with little exercise, was especially detrimental to the cognitive performance of older adults,” said lead investigator Alexandra Fiocco, Ph.D.
Interestingly it is the combination of the two – high salt and no activity – that contribute to function loss. Inactive elders with low salt intake did not suffer cognitive loss.