It really pays to live a healthy lifestyle. Aside from having additional energy and feel-good vibes, ScienceDaily.com reports that choosing wellness may also give you better memory.

Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the Gallup organization worked together on a large-scale poll on smoking, diet, exercise, and memory involving 18,552 individuals from 18 to 99 years old.

As expected, results showed that cognitive problems increased with age. However, a greater percentage of younger and middle-aged adults reported memory issues compared with older adults. Researchers believe that the disparity stems from the fact that both younger and middle-aged adults often make unhealthy choices, which contributed to brain health decline, while older adults often have healthy habits.

To minimize your risk of cognitive decline, start living healthily one step at a time. Take a few minutes each day to exercise, and add more fruits and vegetables to your diet.

The study is published in the June issue of International Psychogeriatrics.

(Photo by John Watson via Flickr Creative Commons)

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