Negative attitudes have been consistently proven to be problematic with the hormonal balance in the body. By causing changes in two specific areas of the organ, negative emotions can set the stage for pathological aging and neurodegeneration.
The two brain regions most affected by negative emotions are the posterior cingulate cortex and the amygdala, according to new findings published in Nature Aging.
These parts are not only closely related to the management of emotions, but also to the development of dementia.
Therefore, this study suggests that negative emotions such as anxiety and depression may promote the development of neurodegeneration.
Sebastian Baez Lugo, author of the study, said:
Read more: Aging can be slowed, stopped or reversed
“The mechanism of emotional inertia in the context of aging is explained by the fact that the brains of these people remain ‘frozen’ in a negative state by associating the suffering of others with their own emotional memories.” will be ”
A key hypothesis of this study is that chronic negative emotions affecting these parts of the brain may contribute to pathological aging.
This type of aging is defined as changes that occur as a result of age-related diseases, unlike those associated with healthy aging.
For example, people diagnosed with cancer may expect morbid aging after undergoing treatments such as radiation and chemotherapy.
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Co-author Professor Patrick Villemier of the University of Geneva said:
“We focused on older people to identify the difference between normal and pathological aging.”
“This is particularly pronounced at the level of activation of the default mode network, a brain network that is highly activated in the resting state.
“Its activity is frequently interrupted by depression and anxiety, suggesting that it is involved in emotional relationships.
“Part of this network, in older adults, the posterior cingulate cortex, which processes autobiographical memories, shows increased connectivity with the amygdala, which processes important emotional stimuli.
“These connections are stronger in subjects with high anxiety scores, ruminations and negative thoughts.”
In the next step of their research, scientists will try to identify ways to counter the effects of negative emotions on the brain.