The ABCs of Alzheimer's Prevention

  • April 08, 2019

As baby boomers continue to retire, the number of seniors in this country is soaring. This has helped to shine a brighter spotlight on aging issues and health conditions more common in older adults. One of which is Alzheimer’s disease.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 5.7 million Americans live with Alzheimer’s disease. By 2050, experts say that number will be 14 million. Alzheimer’s is currently the sixth leading cause of death in this country.

While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, researchers believe there are steps each of us can take to lower our risk for developing it.

5 Things That Might Lower Your Risk for Alzheimer’s

1. Commit to daily exercise: In 2013, the results of a 35-year study on the health habits of over 2,200 men were published. One of the key findings was that regular exercise seemed to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and similar forms of dementia. Most health care experts say getting 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week is best. 

2. Practice brain aerobics: Spending time on activities that challenge your intellectual side is another step you can take that may help ward off mental decline. A study published in JAMA Neurology revealed that not only does engaging in mentally challenging activity help, but the sooner in life you start the better. Reading, playing games, playing a musical instrument, and learning a new foreign language are just a few ways you can give your brain a healthy workout.

3. Eat a healthy diet: We all know there are many reasons we should eat a well-balanced diet. Alzheimer’s prevention is one more reason to add to the list. Eating well may help you avoid developing diabetes and high cholesterol, which some researchers say increase the risk for Alzheimer’s. A few tips for eating a well-balanced diet include consuming:

  • Lots of fruits and vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Very little dairy or red meat
  • Omega-3 rich foods, like fish and broccoli

4. Learn healthy stress-management techniques: It’s fairly common knowledge that stress can do terrible things to the mind and body. Now there is growing evidence that stress may be linked to Alzheimer’s disease. A long-term study in Sweden found that women who experienced high levels of stress were more likely to develop Alzheimer’s or a related form of dementia later in life. That’s why it’s important to find healthy ways to manage your stress. Meditation, nature walks, gardening, and yoga are a few to consider.

5. Build a relationship with a physician: Another way you may be able to ward off dementia is by building a strong relationship with a primary care physician. You are more likely to stay on track with important health screenings, such as cholesterol testing, if you feel comfortable with and confident in your doctor. 

Memory Care at Five Star Senior Living

If a senior you love has dementia, the support of a memory care program can help them live their best quality of life. At Five Star, we call our memory care program the Bridge to Rediscovery.

This award-winning program utilizes proven Montessori methodologies to help residents feel as independent and empowered as possible. We invite you to call the Five Star community nearest you to schedule a private tour and learn more! 


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51 Warning Signs

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