The Association of Aging and Aerobic Fitness With Memory
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The present study examined the differential effects of aging and fitness on memory. Ninety-five young adults (YA) and 81 older adults (OA) performed the Mnemonic Similarity Task (MST) to assess high-interference memory and general recognition memory. Age-related differences in high-interference memory were observed across the lifespan, with performance progressively worsening from young to old. In contrast, age-related differences in general recognition memory were not observed until after 60 years of age. Furthermore, OA with higher aerobic fitness had better high-interference memory, suggesting that exercise may be an important lifestyle factor influencing this aspect of memory. Overall, these findings suggest different trajectories of decline for high-interference and general recognition memory, with a selective role for physical activity in promoting high-interference memory.
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