A new Finnish study has found that negative, cynical people might be more prone to getting dementia.

Although the researches have warned that the study merely shows an association between dementia and cynicism, and not a cause-and-effect link, it is still an interesting find. The study also shows there is an association between those negative traits and physical problems, such as heart disease.

“Our personality may have an impact on our brain health,” said the author of the study Anna-Maija Tolppanen, from the University of Eastern Finland in Kuopio.

“This is the first study showing the link, so it is not possible to say yet whether this is causal or if the association is explained by something else,” she continued.

One of the explanations of this may be that cynical people are less active, therefore leading less healthy lifestyles. When people are less active they may not get the physical exercise that their bodies require. They may also be less socially active, which in turn may increase the risk of dementia.

A person’s personality can have a huge impact on both mental and physical health. Personality may have an effect on a number of different things, including diet, level of physical activeness, and mental/social activeness. By making negative changes to these things based on personality preferences, people can do harm to their mental or physical well being.

“These findings suggest that in addition to established lifestyle-related risk factors, such as exercise or diet, our attitude or personality may be a modifiable risk factor,” Tolppanen added.

The study was published online in Neurology on May 28th.

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