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Volunteer Work Is Good for Your Brain

benefits of volunteering

Story at-a-glance -

  • Volunteer work is unique in that it often involves social, physical and cognitive dimensions, and research has shown that retired seniors who engage in activities that require moderate effort in two or more of these dimensions slash their risk of dementia by 47 percent
  • In individuals aged 60 and over, volunteering regularly decreased the risk of cognitive impairment over a 14-year period
  • Taking part in volunteer work “significantly forestalls” the progress of cognitive decline in people aged 60 years and older
  • Volunteering may lead to increases in volume in brain regions such as the hippocampus, which is involved in memory, as opposed to the declines in volume typically seen with age

By Dr. Mercola

Only about 25 percent of Americans volunteer, despite the fact that doing good for others stands to benefit everyone involved. Volunteer work is unique in that it often involves social, physical and cognitive dimensions, and research has shown that retired seniors who engage in activities that require moderate effort in two or more of these dimensions slash their risk of dementia by 47 percent.


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