Genes aren't necessarily destiny, at least when it comes to mental aging, with research finding that lifestyle accounts for most of how a mind fares in the middle and later years. "This research is extremely exciting as it provides a greater understanding about why mental abilities change throughout our lifetime," said professor James Goodwin of the charity Age UK, which funded the study. "It is also incredibly positive as it suggests that we can have a real influence on how our brain ages through our lifestyle and other external factors."

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