The transitional phase preceding dementia is known as mild cognitive impairment, which is associated with type 2 diabetes; about 45% of people with type 2 diabetes also have mild cognitive impairment. Tai Chi Chuan is a mind-body exercise that consists of slow, focused physical movements accompanied by meditation.
One study determined that using simplified 24-form Tai Chi Chuan improved physical markers and cognitive function in people with type 2 diabetes and mild cognitive impairment compared with a group who participated in traditional fitness walking for 36 weeks. which potentially makes Tai Chi Chuan a viable exercise program for reducing the effects of type 2 diabetes and, subsequently, mild cognitive impairment resulting in dementia.
The Tai Chi group was observed to show more markers of improvement after 36 weeks than the control group and the fitness walking group, although no significant differences were observed between the groups after 24 weeks, suggesting that the improvement in cognition and biomarkers could not occur until after 24 weeks.
This study determined that tai chi is more effective than fitness walking in helping improve cognition for older people with type 2 diabetes and mild cognitive impairment.
All groups were educated about the management of type 2 diabetes and the benefits of exercise and diet to help improve the disorder. Individuals in each group, plus the control group who had no lifestyle changes, participated in 60-minute fitness walking or Tai Chi 3 times a week instructed and supervised by a health professional.
Initially, changes were measured to obtain a baseline, and again at 24 weeks and again at 36 weeks using fasting blood glucose levels and other metabolic markers along with MoCA scores to establish a global scale comparison. for cognitive function. The MoCA is scaled from 0 to 30, with higher cognitive function indicated by a higher score.
The Tai Chi group had an improvement in MoCA score of 3.29 points on average at the end of the 36 weeks compared to the start of the study.
The improvement in the fitness walking group was only 2.32 points, with the improvement slowing dramatically between 24 and 36 weeks with an increase of 0.29 points compared to a -0.68 point increase in the Tai group Who.
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