Cognitive Functions & Normal Aging: Effects on Knowledge & Comprehension

Published: 2022-12-26
593 words
3 pages
5 min to read
University of Richmond
Type of paper: 
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Cognition is the mental action or process of attaining knowledge and comprehension through thought, the senses, and experience. Cognitive functions help humans to receive, select, store, change, develop and recover information that they have received from external stimuli. The process permits people to comprehend and to connect to the world more effectively. Measurable transition in cognition happens with normal aging. The most crucial transformations are decreases in cognitive tasks that necessitate the brain to rapidly process or change information to make a decision. The paper examines the significance and implications of health and fitness in terms of maintaining an optimal cerebral environment for cognitive function.

Every brain changes with age and cognitive function changes along with it. Cognitive decline is common and it is one of the most dreaded repercussions of aging. Yet, mental impairment is not inevitable. There are various ways that a person can maintain cognitive function. Taking care of physical wellbeing is likely to help an individual's cognitive health. Physicians usually advise a person to keep their mind active. Being intellectually active benefits the brain. Individuals who participate in crucial activities tend to live a happier and healthier life (CDC, 2007). Additionally, learning new skills improves the thinking capacity which is crucial for cognitive function.

Health and fitness are powerful factors in maintaining an optimal cerebral environment for cognitive function. Physical activity is one of the well-grounded lifestyle components to maintain cognitive function. In healthy older people, higher physical activity is linked to higher cognitive performance and lower dementia or chronic infection in later life. To preserve normal mental function, the brain requires a continuous distribution of oxygen and other elements, distributed through its plentiful blood vessels. Fitness exercise helps to distribute nutrient-rich blood sufficiently throughout the body. Fitness exercises also intensify the production of mitochondria, which explains the mental edge after the workout (Mercola, 2019). In addition, physical exercises facilities neurogenesis-the capacity to develop new brain cells.

Health is mostly perceived in terms of proper diet consumption. A good diet is important in improving cognitive function. People who consume fruits, fish, nuts, vegetables, plant sources of proteins, and unsaturated oils are less likely to develop mental impairment and dementia. High blood pressure in middle age increases the risk of cognitive decline in old age. Lifestyle changes that ensure that pressure is low are highly advised. Diabetes is a critical risk factor for dementia. It is crucial to prevent diabetes by eating right, taking regular exercises and staying lean. But if the blood sugar remains high, medication is needed to attain good control. Additionally, high levels of cholesterol are linked to high risks of dementia (CDC, 2007). In improving the cholesterol levels, diet, avoidance of tobacco and weight control are very crucial.

Conclusively, cognitive function is crucial in helping a person to understand and interact with others. However, cognitive function is known to decline with age. There are various ways in which a person can improve cognitive function. Health and fitness are some of the factors that are important in maintaining an optimal cerebral environment for cognitive function. In healthy and aging people, fitness exercises are associated with greater cognitive performance and lower rates of dementia. Exercises also ensure that the brain is supplied with oxygen and nutrient-rich blood. Good health is mostly regarded in terms of diet. A balanced diet helps in improving cognitive function.


Centers for Disease Control. (2007). The Healthy Brain Initiative. Retrieved from: on date 12/4/2019

Mercola, J. (2019). Exercise Benefits Brain. Retrieved from: on date 12/4/2019

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