How Marrying a Smart Woman Could Help Fight Dementia

men marry smart women avoid dementia How Marrying a Smart Woman Could Help Fight Dementia


Reason number 9,547 that it’s good for men to partner up with an intelligent woman: It may prevent them from getting dementia later in life.

During an Oxford University literary talk called “Dementia: How Can We Protect Ourselves?” Lawrence Whalley, professor of mental health at the University of Aberdeen, stated, “The thing a boy is never told he needs to do if he wants to live a longer life—but what he should do—is marry an intelligent woman…. There is no better buffer than intelligence.”

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Research shows that reading, writing, doing crossword puzzles, and other intellectual challenges may be linked to a lower risk of Alzheimer’s, the most common form of dementia, so it makes absolute sense that choosing a partner (Whalley’s example is man-woman, but there’s no reason to believe this wouldn’t apply to same-sex pairings, as well) who offers his or her own form of intellectual challenges would have similar effects on the brain.

Plus, after studying biological twins, scientists found that environment has a major impact on a person’s likelihood of getting dementia, which affects an estimated 47.5 million people worldwide. They found people who worked in high-powered jobs and were objectively intelligent were less likely to experience symptoms of illness, even if there were physical signs during brain scans, so it makes sense that verbally sparring with your partner, engaging in the occasional debate, or just discussing a stimulating movie (instead of zoning out in front of another Liam Neeson action flick) could do the same.

Other studies have drawn similar conclusions about how keeping your brain active may improve its health, generate new cells, and lower risk of mental decline. Still, it’s nice to hear scientists confirm what common sense already told us—that it’s good for men on all levels, emotional and physical, to be with a smart woman who challenges them.