Remember This! Recent Study Shows Men are More Likely to be Forgetful


Remember This! Recent Study Shows Men are More Likely to be Forgetful


Whether you forgot to take out the trash (again) or to book a reservation at your wife’s favorite restaurant for your anniversary, take heart: Men are generally more likely than women to be forgetful.

A new Norwegian study published in the journal BMC Psychology found that men forgot information more often than their female counterparts. Researchers asked 37,405 participants memory-related questions. Both male and female participants age 30 and older were asked nine questions concerning their memory and if it had changed. The results showed nearly half of the participants—more men than women—had some trouble recalling memories.

Early Onset Brain Drain
Researchers found that memory problems typically increased with age, but men often had issues recalling information regardless of their age. The research team is unsure why gender played a role in forgetfulness but considered the impact of health conditions, such as high blood pressure or high body mass index. Typically, memory problems begin around age 60. However, research finds forgetfulness may start sooner. A 2012 British study surveying 7,000 people found that memory decline could begin in people as young as age 45. The study included 5,000 men and 2,000 women and took place over a 10-year period. While men ages 65 to 70 saw a 9.6 percent decline, men ages 45 and 49 experienced a 3.6 percent decline in memory.

Gray Matter Games: What Works, What Doesn’t
There are many brain-training games on the market. Before you spend money on expensive software, consider what recent studies had to say. A 2013 study conducted by University of Oslo researchers reviewed results from 23 memory-related studies and found subjects became better at the games as they played, but enhanced game- playing skills did not translate to better performance of other memory-based tasks. However, results may depend on the game the person plays. A study conducted by the University of California, San Francisco found older participants who played a multitasking, brain-training game did experience a significant boost in short-term memory.

Sometimes Simple Is Better
If you’re looking to improve your memory, seek out challenging hobbies you enjoy. Consider activities that require a high level of concentration, including:

• Dancing, such as ballroom or line dancing
• Playing a musical instrument, such as the guitar, piano, or ukulele
• Playing card games, such as Bridge or Rook
• Playing golf
• Speaking, reading, or watching movies in a foreign language (no subtitles!)
• Working crossword puzzles

Exercise Your Brain
There’s plenty you can do to help your brain age gracefully. Keep your gray matter in shape by:

• Adding brain-healthy foods to your diet – Antioxidants found in vibrantly colored fruits and veggies can boost brain health, so when in doubt, pick produce that is dark green, purple, red, or blue. Omega-3 fatty acids found in cold-water fish, such as tuna, salmon, trout, and mackerel, can also nourish your brain. If you’re not a fan of fish, talk with your physician about taking a fish oil supplement.

• Hanging out with friends – Love shooting hoops with friends after work or shopping together? Keep it up. People who are socially engaged are more likely to maintain brain health, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Is your calendar bare? Pick up the phone and call friends or family to see what’s happening.

• Working out – Staying active can decrease your risk of memory-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s. Set aside 30 minutes every day to walk, jog, or train at the gym.