Aerobic Exercise May Benefit The Brain
There is some evidence that regular exercise can lower the risk of Alzheimers and vascular dementia by increasing blood and oxygen flow to the brain.
A small study that supports the benefit of exercise, published in the April; 2017 issue of the British Journal of Sports Medicine;involved 38 older people who had been diagnosed with an early, mild form of vascular dementia.
After six months on an exercise regimen of brisk, one-hour walks three times a week, the walkers had lower blood pressure than subjects in the control group and significantly improved cognitive function, as assessed by brain scan.
How To Prevent Dementia 10 Strategies To Reduce Your Risk
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, there are ways to decrease your risk of dementia. Studies are showing us that healthy lifestyle choices can prevent many forms of cancer, diabetes and heart disease. A healthy lifestyle can also improve your cognitive function. While there is no definitive way to prevent dementia, these 10 healthy lifestyle strategies may help you reduce your risk.
Massive New Study Reveals Politically Incorrect Way To Protect Yourself From Dementia
Researchers in the U.K. recently published the largest-ever study on body weight and dementia. The study followed two million men and women over 20 years. And the researchers published their findings in Lancet, perhaps the premier medical journal of our time. Of course the findings starkly contradict the prevailing wisdom about body weight. So it received very little attention in the mainstream press. Imagine that.
The study found that men and women considered overweight by conventional standards have far lower dementia risks.
Again, this important discovery barely made a blip in the media.
On the other hand, I cant seem to sit down to my computer this week without coming across news about a pitifully designed study showing obese men and women perform worse on memory tests than their healthy weight peers.
But as the saying goesthe devils in the details.
If you look closely at the second study, you see it involved just 50 participants. And it appeared first in a very small medical journal hardly anyones ever heard about.
Of course, that doesnt matter or occur to most mainstream journalists. All they see is a chance to blame obesity for poor memory because it plays into our modern cultural bias against excess weight.
Perhaps as Ive said before the REAL problem isnt obesity. Perhaps the real problem is how we define healthy weight and excess weight in 2016.
Botticelli had it right
Overall, dementia risk fell as BMI increased
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Stage : Moderately Severe Dementia
When the patient begins to forget the names of their children, spouse, or primary caregivers, they are most likely entering stage 6 of dementia and will need full time care. In the sixth stage, patients are generally unaware of their surroundings, cannot recall recent events, and have skewed memories of their personal past. Caregivers and loved ones should watch for:
- Delusional behavior
Ways To Prevent A Dementia Patient From Wandering
6 Ways To Prevent A Dementia Patient From Wandering Taking care of a dementia patient is not easy, especially since they tend to wander sometimes. This can become extremely overwhelming for a caregiver. Every noise at night is a worry to them, in case the patient has gone wandering off somewhere. Taking the patient out is also terrifying. If the caregiver does not keep an eye on the patient all the time, there is always a chance that he/she could get lost, or wander off somewhere and get hurt. Knowing how to prevent a dementia patient from wandering can prevent a lot of anxiety for the caregiver, and will do a lot to keep the patient safe at all times.
Its impossible for a caregiver to keep an eye on a dementia patient every second of the day, however, since they are only human, and there will be times when they simply cant stop the person from wandering.
The following are 6 ways to prevent a dementia patient from wandering, not only to keep him/her safe, but to boost the confidence of the caregiver, and reduce their stress levels as well.
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Follow A Healthy Diet
Studies have shown that following a healthy diet eating lots of fruit, vegetables, legumes and nuts; replacing butter with olive oil; eating fish twice a week; adding herbs and spices instead of salt; and limiting red meat is associated with a reduction in the risk of dementia. Processed foods with high fats and trans fats are associated with;an increased risk of;dementia.
Education And Cognitive Health
Receiving more education in early life mayreduce risk of dementia. According to Lon Schneider, an author of the report and professor of psychiatry, neurology, and gerontology at the University of Southern California, the more we learn, the more cognitive reserve we build up. While connections between brain cells, also known as synapses, may falter due to aging and sickness, You have more reserves to start with, so youre more resilient against illnesses, said Schneider.
Heres what you can do: Engaging in intellectual activities later in life can potentially help maintain cognitive abilities. One study in China which found people older than the age of 65 who read, played games or bet more frequently were less likely to develop dementia. Another study showed that people who participated in intellectual, physical and social activities in midlife were more likely to have better cognition in old age.
Read more about past research on the link between early childhood education and Alzheimers disease, the most common form of dementia.;;
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Do One Activity Every Day That Doesn’t Have A Deadline
When you’re planning activities that will provide a sense of accomplishment each day, include one small task that doesn’t have a deadline. For example, changing your air conditioner filters. When people are stressed, these tasks can end up ignored, but then they pile up. When this happens, we sense we’re not doing a very good job of adulting. When you do a tiny task that wasn’t urgent, it will give you a boost of efficacy. It will help you feel you’re on top of your life, and this can have flow-on mood-boosting effects.
Pillar #: Social Engagement
Human beings are highly social creatures. We dont thrive in isolation, and neither do our brains. Staying socially engaged may even protect against symptoms of Alzheimers disease and dementia in later life, so make developing and maintaining a strong network of friends a priority.
You dont need to be a social butterfly or the life of the party, but you do need to regularly connect face-to-face with someone who cares about you and makes you feel heard. While many of us become more isolated as we get older, its never too late to meet others and develop new friendships:
- Join a club or social group.
- Visit your local community center or senior center.
- Take group classes .
- Get to know your neighbors.
- Make a weekly date with friends.
- Get out .
Learn To Play An Instrument
Appreciation of music is one of the last senses that are affected by dementia. Not only does listening to music promote effective neural pathways it can also promote positive mental health. Listening to favourite music is not just relaxing it can also help retrieval of precious memories.
Take this one step further, by learning to play an instrument , as this helps tap into areas of the brain that are not normally used.
Additionally, to promoting neural pathways, this activity can also help muscle memory that can support other skills such as craft work, driving and other manual skills. The more frequently a musical instrument is played, the more active the brain becomes.
How To Get A Quality Sleep
Reinforce circadian rhythms by going to bed and getting up at the same time every day. Your brain will respond to regularity.
If you find that you need to nap in the daytime, it can also affect your night time sleep. So, if you need an energising afternoon nap, set a timer for 30 minutes.
Ideally dont use a computer, tablet or your phone in the bedroom or for at least 2 hours before bedtime. Use of these can excite the brain, preventing sleep.
Snoring can prevent a good nights sleep. If you have sleep apnea, then it can be potentially dangerous due to interrupted breathing. See your doctor for advice.
If you have difficulty in falling to sleep, dont lie in bed tossing, turning and worrying about sleep; get up make a camomile tea or read an unexciting book.
Have a bedtime ritual. Take a relaxing bath, do some simple stretches, dim the lights. This will signal the brain that it is time for some quality sleep.
Clear your mind of the day by writing a page in your journal. Make to-do lists as this will help you to drop off to sleep without worrying.
Stress, anxiety or negative internal dialogues can prevent sleep. Read or relax in another room. Try a milky drink or turkey sandwich to help aid sleep.
New studies have highlighted that poor sleep is not a symptom of Dementia it, it is a possible risk factor. Advice is that if you are affected by poor sleep patterns, you should seek medical advice. Most adults need 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night.
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People Need To Find Ways To Reduce Chronic Stress And Anxiety In Their Lives Or They May Be At An Increased Risk For Developing Depression And Even Dementia Warns A Review
Written by Agencies | Published : January 22, 2016 4:00 PM IST
People need to find ways to reduce chronic stress and anxiety in their lives or they may be at an increased risk for developing depression and even dementia, warns a review. There is an extensive overlap of the brain’s neural activity in anxiety, fear and stress which may explain the link between chronic stress and the development of neuropsychiatric disorders — mental disorders, including depression and Alzheimer’s disease, the findings showed. Chronic stress is a pathological state that is caused by prolonged activation of the normal acute physiological stress response, which can wreak havoc on immune, metabolic and cardiovascular systems, and leads to degeneration of the brain’s hippocampus . Pathological anxiety and chronic stress are associated with structural degeneration and impaired functioning of the hippocampus which may account for the increased risk of developing neuropsychiatric disorders, including depression and dementia, said lead author Linda Mah, an assistant professor at the University of Toronto in Canada.
Common Habits Of Superagers
1.; SuperAgers live an active lifestyle.
Staying active is one of the best things you can do as you age. Physical activity results in increased oxygen intake, which helps your body perform optimally. Exercise helps your heart, and muscle-strengthening exercises specifically reduce the risk for falls.
Regular exercise also helps you maintain a healthy weight. The risk for developing Alzheimers disease triples in individuals with a body mass index over 30. Even exercising twice a week will help lower your chances of getting the disease later in life.
2.; SuperAgers continue to challenge themselves.
Mental activity can be just as important as physical activity. If Sudoku doesnt speak to you, no need to fret. Mental activity comes in many forms. Try reading an article on a subject with which youre unfamiliar, or take classes that put you outside your comfort zone. These will help stimulate and engage the brain in new ways.
3.; SuperAgers are social butterflies.
SuperAgers tend to report strong social relationships with others, says Dr. Rogalski. To support this, the attention region deep in the brain is larger in SuperAgers. This region is packed with large, spindly neurons called von Economo neurons, which are thought to play a role in social processing and awareness. Dr. Rogalski states that autopsies on SuperAgers revealed they have more than four to five times the number of such neurons compared to the average octogenarian.
4.; SuperAgers indulge.
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Brain Risk Factors That Can Be Controlled
- mental activity regularly challenging your brain with mentally stimulating activities through education, occupation or leisure is linked with lower risk of cognitive decline and dementia
- social activity participating in social activities and being connected with your community, family and friends is linked with a lower risk of dementia.
Tips For Caregivers And Families Of People With Dementia
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A caregiver, sometimes referred to as a caretaker, refers to anyone who provides care for another person. Millions of people living in the United States take care of a friend or family member with Alzheimers disease or a related dementia. Sometimes caregivers live with the person or nearby, other times they live far away. For many families, caring for a person with dementia isnt just one persons job, but the role of many people who share tasks and responsibilities. No matter what kind of caregiver you are, taking care of another person can be overwhelming at times. These tips and suggestions may help with everyday care and tasks.
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Obesity And Dementia Risk
Research shows people who are obese are more likely to develop dementia later in life. Some researchers say obesity should be considered premature aging, as it is strongly linked to chronic health problems in old age.;
According to Adesola Ogunniyi, an author of the report and a professor of medicine at University of Ibadan, Nigeria, obesity is a risk factor for chronic cardiovascular diseases, which damage blood vessels in the brain and reduce blood flow. This leads to a cascade of inflammation and oxidative stress an imbalance between oxygen-containing molecules and antioxidants which would eventually lead to the death of brain cells.;
Heres what you can do:Ogunniyi recommended losing weight, avoiding excess calories and reducing sugary beverages along with staying active and exercising.;
Read more about past research on the link between obesity in midlife, body mass index and dementia
So Is Dementia Prevention Even Possible
Growing evidence seems to agree that, yes, there are measures that can be taken to lower your risk of developing dementia. Even though more extensive and broader based studies are necessary to fill the gaps in knowledge, medical professionals agree that there are steps you can take to protect yourself and your brain as you age. Our memory and old age Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Rafael Euba, says: Its becoming increasingly evident that whilst there is no clear or certain way to prevent dementia, specific lifestyle factors are likely to contribute to an increased risk of developing the disease. Addressing these factors, particularly during midlife, can lessen the chance of developing dementia as we age.
Today nearly 50 million people worldwide have dementia. This figure is likely to increase three-fold over the next 30 years. And whilst dementia seems to be accepted generally as an inevitable part of ageing, this is not the case. Steps can be taken to reduce the number of dementia cases and delay the onset of the disease.
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Tips For Stopping Smoking
- Talk to your GP or pharmacist about different ways to stop smoking.
- Try using a date or event as motivation for stopping. For example, you could make it a new years resolution, or give up during October as part of Stoptober.
- Consider using a less harmful alternative nicotine-containing product such as e-cigarettes, lozenges or gum.
- Try using NHS Smokefree support services, which include a helpline, app and local support services.
Keep Your Brain Flexible
Neuroplasticity is a big word for the brain’s ability to continue changing and growing. A study in the JAMA Psychiatry journal suggests that a flexible brain can slow dementia. The thought is that when you have more brain connections, you are less likely to suffer from dementia because your brain is more able to adapt and create new connections.
Action Strategy: Make a goal to use your brain every day. Whether it is learning a new language or figuring out your new phone. The more you continue to use your brain, the healthier your brain stays.
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How Diabetes Drives Dementia Risk
Diabetes is linked to the degeneration of small blood vessels as well as strokes which are in turn risk factors of dementia. It is possible beta-amyloid plaques and tau tangles, the biomarkers of Alzheimers, play a role in high blood sugar levels, Larson said. But more research is needed to pinpoint biological mechanisms linking diabetes and dementia beyond those related to blood flow.;
Most people have type 2 diabetes, which leads to a two-fold increased risk of developing Alzheimers. As cells fail to respond to insulin the hormone that manages blood sugar levels the body produces more insulin, which in turn, leads to overly high levels of blood sugar.;
Heres what you can do: Researchers warn that type 2 diabetes and Alzheimers are reaching epidemic proportions, as they urge people to manage their stress, get a good nights sleep, maintain a balanced weight, eat a healthy diet with less sugary beverages, stay active and exercise regularly.;
Read more about past research on the link between the brains metabolic function, diabetes and dementia;;