Faculty News

Michigan Minds: Religious involvement and cognitive health

People over 50 who attend religious services and pray may notice better memory performance, a new study led by U-M psychology doctoral candidate Zarina Kraal found. 

In this episode of Michigan Minds, Kraal discusses the study’s findings that frequent religious services and private prayers were linked to stronger cognitive health among blacks, whites, and Hispanics.

“Attending religious services may promote social engagement with religious peers, and social engagement has been positively associated with cognitive outcomes,” Kraal said. 

Separate from social benefits, religious attendance may be linked to better cognitive health through stimulating cognitive activities unique to religious services.

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