Numerous studies showed that even in the aging brain, exer¬cise may help to create new brain cells. As observed by Nishiguchi et al. (2014), cognitive tasks in older adults can activate the brain and improve efficiency. Simultaneous cognitive and motor tasks may improve intellectual function when combined with exercise training, cognitive, and dual task (DT) exercises (Nishiguchi et al., 2014). For example, in a 12 week physical and cognitive exercise study using an RCT, Nishiguchi et al. (2014) were able to note improvements in memory and executive functions in older adults with cognitive impairment and older adults without. Kamegaya et al. (2014) also demonstrated that Japanese adults 65 years and older with subjective memory complaints showed improvement in some aspect of cognition function when they participated in a pleasant physical exercise intervention program for 12-weeks. Pleasant physical exercise included exercises that required complete ability in physical activity involving flexibility, muscle strength, balance, and endurance. Participants were also encouraged to take part in leisure activities, such as attending educational lectures and participating in novel activities such as cooking (Kamegaya et al., 2014).
Culture and ethnicity. Increasing evidence shows that in the United States, ethnic minority communities continue to experience high occurrence of preventable chronic diseases due to lack of physical activity (Belza et al., 2011). In spite of the well documented health benefits of exercise and a healthy diet, older adults from African American, Latino, and American Indian communities continue to have higher incidence of mortality and morbidity from diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, ...
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...arriers for each individual before exercise placement. Common barriers to exercise that the CNL can help the older adults resolve include financial strain, health issues, gym membership, and connection with other senior citizens. The CNL can resolve this strain by directing the aging adults to the proper resources.
The outcome of this literature review showed that very few older adults participate in exercise programs in comparison to their counterparts in Asian countries. It is accordingly the role of nurses as healthcare providers to actively inform, encourage, and advise older adults about the health benefits of exercise. Exercise such as Tai Chi has been shown to improve mood, gait, memory and sleep, increase muscle mass and reduce the risk of fall. Sufficient evidence showed it is never too late to incorporate exercise into an older adult’s life.
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