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Save the brain

The news-brief headline in the October edition of Harvard Health Letter sure caught this librarian's attention:

"Read a book, preserve your memory."

Research published in July and earlier shows that if you're older and you are a regular reader, you can slow ordinary mental decline by a substantial amount.

But while this sounds like a real boost for publishers and authors and libraries, it turns out to be a little less than exciting because the same article notes that other studies have shown that just about any mental stimulation in old age forestalls decline.

Dance, sing, paint, do Sudoku, do a puzzle -- and read. It's all going to help keep you alert and mentally quick.

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