"Were often council that we should use it or lose it, particularly when it comes to keeping your mind sharp when you got a bit older, they're saying abounding crossword day keeps dementia bay, but are they actually true. A new study out in the British medical journal says not is colleges. Duncan astle. No. He wasn't involved in this study directly, but he does work on similar research projects Cambridge University, and he's been taking the findings Forrest welcome to the program Duncan. So first of all who's done. This study has been done by a group in Aberdeen led by Rodger stuff institute Medical Sciences with his colleagues, and what would they seek into find out why they recruited a group of sixty four year olds. And then they followed those individuals over the next fifteen years. Seeing each person five times each within that time period. And each time we saw them they measured different cognitive skills, like short term, memory and attention skills. And they also conducted a questionnaire, which they called the intellectual engagement questionnaire. Ask questions about in do you enjoy reading do you enjoy problem solving crosswords? Are you curious to you want to learn about new things like social media? And what they wanted to explore was how the relationship between these two different types of measures changes over that fifteen year period. And does this give them the power critically to control for people who start off from a good point? Because if taking the idea that if I do loss across words, this will defer dementia if I'm starting from a high point, then another person, it may just be that. I was always good at doing crosswords, and I'll just keep doing crosswords, and I have a low risk of dementia anyway versus someone who doesn't do many crosswords starts Molo point, the dementias manifest more, obviously soon. So that's very good questions, the parental. No problem with studying cognitive aging is that it takes a very long time to study it. And so you often end up studying people over relatively short periods of times to fifteen years sounds like a long time. But of course, in within the span, even that's short period of time. But there's something very special about these individuals and that all of them took part in a study in nineteen forty seven when they were all eleven years old. And as part of that study they conducted a cognitive assessment. So they had this very good baseline of cognitive ability from many years before the study even started what they initially hoped to see was that the trajectory of decline in the cognitive skills would be altered by the degree of intellectual engagement from the question as those people who are more intellectually engaged much reduced decline in cognitive skills as they get older. But what they found actually wasn't that the response on the questionnaire moderate the rate of decline they just found that people who were more intellectually engaged had better. A cognitive skills. Overall and everybody declines at roughly the same rate. Right. So the whole idea of use it or lose it is therefore it's a myth. It's not gonna work that way. It's not so much that it's a myth. It's the myth part. I guess is is about the trajectory. So what this study and some other previous have shown is that essentially what predicts good cognitive health in older age is good cognitive health throughout the lifespan, essentially, these people start off further from some kind of functional threshold so they have to drop before they start experiencing cognitive difficulties. Does this mean, then if you've reached old age, and and you've never been that Sharpe's tool in the draw is too late. Or are you saying actually you gotta make the most of what you have got. I think you probably have to make the most of what you have gone. So it's very hard to demonstrate that doing cross wasn't. So on will cause you to have better cognitive health. But it certainly can't hurt. But we do know that there are lots of other. Factors that are very good predictors of cognitive, health and odor ageing difference. Having good cardiovascular health is a great producer of having good cognitive health. So lead healthy life from the get-go. This have the best likelihood of preserving your intellect into old age line."