How good is your balance? Can you stand on one leg for 20 seconds? What about for a whole minute - or with your eyes closed?
It's something you might not have given much thought to before, but how well you can balance offers an insight into your general health.
A study published in the journal Stroke found that being unable to stand on one leg for more than 20 seconds was linked to an increased risk of 'silent' stroke - tiny bleeds in the brain that don't cause symptoms, but which raise the risk of both full-blown stroke and dementia.
'The ability to balance on one leg is an important test for brain health,' says Dr Yasuharu Tabara, associate professor of genomic medicine at Kyoto University, Japan, who led the research.
Last year, the UK's Medical Research Council found that 53-year-olds who could stand on one leg for ten seconds with their eyes closed were the most likely to be fit and well in 13 years' time. However, those who could manage only two seconds were three times as likely to die before the age of 66.
Source - Daily Mail