Background: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by neuronal degeneration, vascular pathology and cognitive decline. Furthermore, deficits in cerebral glucose metabolism and insulin resistance are being increasingly recognized in AD. Many lifestyle-modifying approaches, including diet and exercise, have yielded promising results in modulating brain morphology and function for the prevention and early treatment of AD.Objective: This review focuses on the effects of physical exercise on rescuing cognition and limiting the progression of AD pathology. Specifically, the impact of exercise, in human and animal models of AD, on the stimulation and preservation of cognition, neurotransmission, neurogenesis, vasculature, glucose metabolism and insulin signaling is discussed. Conclusion: Studies have highlighted the potential of physical activity to improve overall brain health, which could delay or lessen AD-related cognitive deficits and pathology. Physical activity influences cognitive function, vascular health and brain metabolism, which taken together offers benefits for the aging population, including AD patients.