Defeating Dementia

Posted on : May 04, 2017 | Filled under : News

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contrary to popular belief, Alzheimer’s disease doesn’t have to be an inevitability. These five tips could reduce your risk of dementia by 60 percent.

A staggering number of seniors live in fear of going senile, and with good reason: Our risk of dementia doubles every five years after we turn 65. But few people realize that Alzheimer’s disease – the most common form of dementia – can begin to develop 10 to 20 years before we show the classic symptoms of memory loss and confusion. Ready for some good news? A 35-year study published in 2013 by Britain’s Alzheimer’s Society indicates that there are measures we can take to reduce our risk by as much as 60 percent. Here are five sound strategies for staving off dementia at any age.

Monitor your cholesterol, blood pressure and risk for diabetes. There appears to be a link between the inflammation of blood vessels in the brain and the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, which may be why people with untreated diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol have vastly higher rates of dementia. Get your cholesterol and blood pressure levels checked regularly, and ask your doctor if you’re at risk for type 2 diabetes. Cutting back on fat, sugar and salt can’t hurt, either.

Exercise regularly. We all know that regular exercise is good for our bodies, but new evidence points to it being good for our brains, as well. In addition to promoting blood vessel health and lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, exercise produces endorphins, which stave off depression and promote healthy brain activity.

Keep your mind sharp. While most scientists agree that exercising your mind is a surefire way to stave off dementia, crossword puzzles and Sudoku probably won’t cut it. Instead, try taking up a new hobby or sport, learning a new language, or walking an unfamiliar route. Exposing your mind to new challenges will build brain cells and neural connections, forming a “cognitive reserve” that can delay the onset of Alzheimer’s.

Beware of stress and depression. Stress and depression have been linked to the onset of dementia, especially among those who have maintained a high-stress lifestyle over an extended period of time. This is likely related to the harmful effects of cortisol, a hormone whose production is triggered by stress, on blood pressure and brain cells. Meanwhile, people who have suffered from long-term depression tend to have more plaques and tangles in their brains – and are therefore more likely to develop dementia symptoms.

Consider a Mediterranean diet. It’s no accident that seniors in Mediterranean countries like Greece and Italy tend to have longer lives and higher cognition than their counterparts in the US. A Mediterranean diet means plenty of fruits and vegetables, fish, olive oil, nuts, red wine (in moderation), and not much meat or dairy. The combination of high fiber, antioxidants, omega-3s, and lean proteins – and low levels of sugar, salt and fat – promotes healthy brain function, along with a host of other health benefits.

Join King Wealth Planning for our Aging with Dignity program in October, 2017. We will host a forum of local experts in different health areas to offer our clients and our community resources designed for staying healthy, wealthy and wise as we age.

Aging with Dignity
Thursday, 10/26/17 2-4pm
Campbell Community Center, Orchard City Banquet Hall, Campbell 9500
Register: inquiry@kingwealth.com or call 408.879.0789  or 800.59-ADVISE (800.592.3847)

Stay tuned to our website, social media and weekly publications for details!

Download a PDF of this artice: Defeating Dementia


 

Source: Select Quote (2017). Retrieved from: http://news.selectquote.com/archives/3567?AgentID=GDC&sCode=N4M

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            Contrary to popular belief, Alzheimer’s disease doesn’t have to be an inevitability. These five tips could reduce your risk of dementia by 60 percent. A staggering number of seniors live in fear of going senile, and with good reason: Our risk of dementia...