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Dementia is a growing problem worldwide, with numbers predicted to almost triple over the next 30 years.

The rise is generally attributed to the growing and aging population, but lifestyle can also contribute. However, a new study suggests there may be some good news in the field of dementia.

It found that people’s brains have been getting larger over the past 100 years, and this increased brain reserve could, potentially, reduce the risk of age-related dementias.

This study looked at participants in the Framingham Heart Study (FHS). This long-term study has followed 15,000 individuals for more than 75 years. People born in the 1970s had greater brain volumes than those born in the 1930s.

Previous studies have suggested that larger brain volume protects against the effects of dementia pathology, arguing that those with a greater head circumference can endure a greater degree of damage before they start to show cognitive impairment.

Larger brain structures like those observed in the study may reflect improved brain development and improved brain health. A larger brain structure represents a larger brain reserve and may buffer the late-life effects of age-related brain diseases like Alzheimer’s and related dementias.

Source: Medical News Today