28 Mar Top 10 Tips for the Prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease
As there is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, we should all be focusing on how to prevent it and reduce our risk of developing it later in life. Studies that have been carried out on the subject reveal that certain factors of our daily lifestyle play a very important part in Alzheimer’s prevention. So what can we alter in our everyday lives to reduce our risk? Well, take a look at these 10 tips for preventing Alzheimer’s disease.
1. Eat apples regularly
The production of a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine is stimulated by apple consumption. According to the University of Massachusetts, Alzheimer’s drugs such as Aricept do a similar job to apples and stimulate the production of acetylcholine.
2. Take up regular exercise
Not only can regular exercise lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s, but it can also slow down the progression of the disease in those who have already started to develop Alzheimer’s. Studies show that exercise helps to preserve the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for memory. Recommended exercises include; brisk walking, dancing, swimming and cycling to name a few. Susannah Spencer, a dementia specialist from Country Court Care said “what’s good for the heart is good for the head and regular exercise is one of the best ways to reduce your risk of developing dementia”.
3. Start drinking coffee
It is said that caffeine helps to block the build-up of Alzheimer’s brain toxins. One study revealed that drinking around 3 to 5 cups of coffee a day can help to reduce the risk of someone developing Alzheimer’s by up to 65 percent.
4. Quit smoking
The World Health Organisation reported that they found that individuals who smoke have a 45 percent higher risk of developing dementia compared to those who didn’t smoke. The WHO also said in the same report from October 2014 that about 14 percent of all dementia cases could have possibly been somewhat caused by smoking.
5. Cut down on sugar
There has been a link made between diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease in recent years, it is thought that those with diabetes have double the chance of developing Alzheimer’s later in life than non-diabetics. The correlation was discovered when a doctor from Brown Medical School noted that in individuals with advanced Alzheimer’s the insulin levels in their brain were 80 percent lower than that of a normal functioning brain. The result of this lower insulin level is that the brain becomes starved of the energy and sugar it needs, ultimately leading to the development of Alzheimer’s.
6. Learn something new
Keeping your brain active is an essential part of strengthening and stimulating it. Working out your brain is just as important as working out your body and can help to slow down memory loss related illnesses. Expanding your vocabulary by learning a new language is said to be the most effective and could offset the development of Alzheimer’s in an individual by up to 4 years.
7. Eat some dark chocolate
Introduce a little bit of dark chocolate to your diet, and make sure that the cocoa content is at least 70 percent for it to do its job properly. Dark chocolate can improve blood circulation and lower blood pressure, and this improvement can help reduce the risk of developing vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s.
8. Eat fruits that contain fisetin
In a 2014 study carried out on mice, it was found that fisetin had a positive impact and helped to fight the onset of Alzheimer’s in the mice, and it was all due to fisetin’s anti-inflammatory properties. Fisetin is only found in a small number of foods such as strawberries, mangoes, apples, grapes and peaches, for example.
9. Be social
Being an extrovert and engaging a lot socially will delay cognitive decline in an individual, so having a large group of friends and great family relations is not only essential for your emotional health, but also for your physical health. Having a significant other in your life or being married also significantly reduces your risk.
Meditation can help to clear your mind and bring calmness to your life, stress and anxiety has been linked to the development of Alzheimer’s disease, especially where individuals were already at risk. A reduction in stress means a reduction in the hormone cortisol, which has been linked to the development of dementia. Researchers from Baycrest Health Sciences Rotman Research Institute in Canada discovered that those with a mild cognitive impairment combined with a high level of stress or anxiety had as much as 135 percent more chance of developing Alzheimer’s in cases of severe anxiety.
A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s can be fairly devastating to an individual. The best we can do is bear all of these tips in mind and try to reduce the risk of developing it ourselves. These tiny changes we can implement in our lives could really make a world of difference and ensure a long and happy life.