f you’re older than 26, you’re already starting to lose your marbles, says BBCnews.com. By 27, says a new study of brain function, your brain begins a slow decline toward the fog of dementia. Study author Timothy Salthouse of the University of Virginia performed cognitive tests on 2,000 healthy people between the ages of 18 and 60, studying their ability to solve puzzles, recall words and story details, and spot patterns in an assortment of symbols. He found that the age for peak mental performance is 22. By age 27, there was a marked decline in brain speed and puzzle-solving skills. Memory skills, he says, can keep pace for a longer time, remaining strong until around age 37, when they start going downhill. Fortunately, Salthouse finds, we do gain wisdom as we age, with both our vocabulary and general storehouse of knowledge growing until at least age 60.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why China's Communist Party is headed for collapse
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- Why Antonin Scalia was right to defend a drug dealer
- Obama doesn't have a manhood problem — but conservatives certainly do
- Why Mindy Kaling — not Lena Dunham — is the body positive icon of the moment
- Why we need a maximum wage
- 10 things you need to know today: April 23, 2014
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
- The sexual politics of Game of Thrones just got enormously worse
Subscribe to the Week