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Adopting Brain-Healthy Behaviours Can Help Older Adults Stave Off Dementia and Cognitive Decline


As per estimates, the number of people aged 65 and older living with Alzheimer’s is expected to rise from the current 5.8 million to 13.8 million by 2050. But research holds promise to improve and protect brain health and possibly stave off dementia and slow cognitive decline.

Lifestyle- in terms of what you eat and drink, how much you exercise, how well you sleep, the way you socialize, and how you manage stress- are all critically important to your brain health. Here are recommendations that will help you navigate your journey to brain health. Read on:

Physical Exercise- People who exercise regularly have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia. Exercise offers protective benefits to your mental health, in fact, walking has been found to give your brain health a big boost.  Walking produces large pressure waves in the body that significantly increases blood flow to the brain, which helps maintain health and cognitive function.

Adequate Sleep- Numerous studies conducted over the past few decades have linked sleep disturbances to poor brain health. The key to preventing brain decline is by getting adequate sleep, which you can ensure by establishing a pattern for sleeping, keeping your room dark and cool, and avoiding heavy eating or drinking before bedtime. It is just as important to consult your physician for any daytime sleepiness and whether you should be screened for sleep apnea. According to researchers, obstructive sleep apnea (sleep condition that causes brief periods of partial or complete stoppage of breathing) is associated with higher rates of cognitive impairment.

Nuts- Healthy and balanced diet definitely promotes brain health, but a study says that monounsaturated fatty acids, which are nutrients found in olive oils, nuts and avocados, may hold the key to having a healthy brain. For a brain-boosting diet, focus on fresh foods (it is best to follow the Mediterranean diet, which is linked to protecting long-term brain health), and stay away from additives, including processed foods, trans fats, and added sugars.

Keep your Blood Sugar in Check- Several studies have established the connection between high blood sugar and lower brain functioning. Manage your blood sugar by controlling your portion sizes at meals, staying hydrated (as drinking water flushes out toxins and removes blood sugars from your kidney), and watching your symptoms, including increased headaches, tiredness, blurred vision, and/or trips to the bathroom to urinate- these indicate low blood sugar levels.

Keep your Heart in Good Shape- According to the American Heart Association, risk factors that cause heart disease are also major contributors to late-life cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease. This connection can be attributed to adequate blood flow that both the heart and brain require to function properly. Regular physical exercise, stress management, avoiding tobacco products, improving diet- are essential for maintaining good heart health.

Make sure you get plenty of Vitamin C, practice yoga and mindfulness medication, and if you cannot do without coffee it’s time you break up with it.

Cognitive Activities to Improve Brain Health:

  1. Read a book
  2. Sign up for a class (learn a new language, computer, cooking)
  3. Solve crossword puzzles
  4. Play board games
  5. Socialize

The best way to keep older adults safe at home is by considering in-home care. Make sure to speak to a senior care of Charlotte, NC advisor before taking any decision.

For more info, check out: https://www.arogahomecare.com

 

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