Healthy lung is the secret to smarter brains

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Sydney, May 21 (UNI) Healthy lungs in children increase their memory, learning and intelligence, a new study suggests.

Examining 165 children since birth, the researchers found that for each increase in the children's lung-function performance, there was a corresponding increase in their cognitive-test scores.

Previous studies linked lung function to mental activity in middle-aged and older adults, while stating that the respiratory and neurological systems are influenced by some of the same factors during childhood.

Published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine, the new findings revealed that at the age of six, the children had their lung function tested. At nine, they completed standard tests of memory, learning ability and intelligence.

The link remained even when the investigators accounted for factors that could be related to both lung function and cognitive abilities in children, like asthma, and exposure to lead or parents' smoking.


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