How mentally and intellectually challenging your job is now may have a positive (or negative) affect on your cognitive abilities later in life, after retirement, a new study published in the May issue of Neurology suggests.
The study contained 1,036 twin males. Each participant underwent a test, which determined their learning abilities when they joined the United States military in the 1940s. Each participant underwent follow-up assessments every three to four years after they reached the age of 60.
The study found that those who held occupations, which had intellectual demands had better cognitive abilities after retirement, while those who held occupations, which had physical demands had worse cognitive abilities in retirement.
The study authors note that occupation and age are only two factors that contribute to one's cognitive abilities, but that occupation can have a positive or negative impact on cognition as one ages.