A Surprising New Way to Lower Your Risk of Dementia

If you’re a senior or you’re taking care of an elderly relative, you may have concerns about dementia. While some factors, like aging and genetics, are beyond your control, many experts believe that lifestyle changes can reduce your risk by as much as 30% or more.

In fact, a recent study found one more way to help your brain stay healthy in your golden years.

According to researchers at Yale University, a positive attitude about aging could cut your risk of dementia in half.

They also found that gracefully accepting the aging process worked just as well for seniors with the APOE 4 gene that is strongly associated with developing chronic brain conditions.

Dementia is not a normal part of aging, but a set of symptoms that often includes a decline in memory and other daily functions.

Protect yourself and your loved ones by learning how to embrace aging and develop other healthy habits.

Strategies for Changing Your Attitude About Aging:

1. Reframe your thoughts.

You’re in control of how you respond to situations, so replace negative beliefs with more affirming ones.

Learn from setbacks and use hardships to make you stronger and braver.

2. Stay connected.

Surround yourself with family and friends who nurture and encourage you. Ask for help when you need it.

3. Laugh more.

Try to see the humorous side of difficult events. Schedule time in your day to play with your grandchildren or watch a funny movie.

4. Advocate for aging.

Studies also show that experiencing age discrimination can intensify negative beliefs about aging. Speak up when you see incidents of ageism at work or in the media.

Other Strategies to Lower Your Risk of Dementia:

1. Exercise regularly.

Aim to work out at least 3 days a week for at least 30 minutes. Exercise can help to protect you from heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, which are some of the most common conditions that raise your risk for dementia.

2. Quit smoking.

Using tobacco harms your brain by interfering with your circulation. If you have had trouble giving up cigarettes in the past, try a different method or a combination of approaches.

3. Lose weight.

Shedding excess pounds benefits your brain as well as your body. Even a modest 5% loss can have dramatic effects.

4. Limit alcohol.

Heavy drinking makes you more vulnerable to dementia. The Centers for Disease Control recommends no more than one drink a day for women and two for men.

5. Challenge your brain.

Exercise strengthens your brain just like lifting weights builds your muscles. Enjoy word puzzles or Sudoku.

Study a foreign language or practice playing a musical instrument.

6. Check your hearing.

Scientists are discovering more evidence about the link between hearing loss and dementia.

Many experts believe that this is because hearing impairment causes social isolation and also makes the brain work harder to process sounds, leaving fewer resources available for other mental activities.

7. Sit less.

Prolonged sitting can take its toll on your mental and physical health even if you exercise regularly.

The most effective strategy may be to shift positions often among sitting, standing, and walking.

8. Spot early signs.

The first visible symptoms of dementia frequently include memory loss, difficulty concentrating, and confusion.

Prompt diagnosis and treatment can often delay the onset of further symptoms. Talk with your doctor and get routine checkups.

Stay mentally sharp and active by lowering your risk of dementia. A positive attitude and a healthy lifestyle will give you more years to spend with your loved ones and enjoy your favorite pastimes.

More Resources

There are many fabulous anti-aging guides you can get online, as well as a range of natural supplements and tools to help you exercise and stay in shape for life.

I recently published a book to help everyone stay younger for longer, and as a Baby Boomer myself, it is a very important topic to me - lol!

7 Ways in 7 Days to Youthful Mind & Body

8 Ways to Keep Your Mind in Shape

A lot of us are concerned with the size of our biceps or the girth of our waist. Having a fit body is important.

However, keeping your mind in shape is critical to enjoying your life at the highest level. Give your brain the attention it deserves!

Keep your mind healthy, active, and in shape with these strategies:

1. Exercise regularly.

Roughly 30% of your brain's volume is composed of blood vessels. It's important to keep your blood moving!

Exercise will get your blood flowing and help to control your blood sugar.

High blood sugar is harmful to blood vessels. That's why so many diabetics die of heart disease or stroke at a relatively young age.

2. Read each day.

Reading requires a lot of your brain. It's not easy to transform symbols into words and meaning.

Spend some time each day with a book that makes you think. You might learn something useful, too.

* Avoid reading the same types of books on a regular basis.

Read well-written articles. Read the classics. Try a new science fiction novel. How about a book on theoretical physics?

Reading the sports page every day doesn't count. The same goes for romance novels by your favorite author. Mix it up.

3. Eat well.

A healthy diet will help preserve your brain function. Do a little research on the best diet for longevity and attempt to make a few changes to your eating habits.

A few, small changes each month will go a long way toward keeping your brain healthy.

4. Meditate.

Meditation is powerful for several reasons. You'll learn to focus like a Tibetan monk. You'll also learn how to relax.

Both are wonderful for your brain. Meditation is hard work. It's like a decathlon for your mind.

* Find a good teacher in your area and meditate in a group. You'll make some new friends, too.

5. Challenge yourself.

Learn something new. Learning to paint, speak a new language, or dance are a few great examples.

Learning something new forces your brain to create new neural pathways. Your brain's ability to change is referred to as its "elasticity."

* This can be very challenging at first.

If you've been living the same day repeatedly for several years, learning something new is similar to going jogging for the first time.

It's painful, and you don't get too far. Be patient and give your brain a chance to wake up.

6. Do something that requires a lot of brainpower.

It might be solving cryptograms or writing a computer program. Take a multivariate calculus class. Study chess. Push your brain to the maximum.

7. Remember the past.

As we grow older, it's more challenging to remember facts from the past. When you can't remember something, avoid giving up. Take all the time you need to remember.

You might finally remember the name of your high-school English teacher while you're mowing the grass. Keep at it.

8. Get out and socialize.

Spending too much time alone has been shown to increase the likelihood of developing dementia.

Have an active social life and spend more time with others. You'll enjoy your life more, too.

There are many benefits to keeping your mind in tip-top condition.

You'll enjoy better mental health and preserve your mental faculties longer. Keeping your mind healthy requires attention.

Challenge yourself to learn new information and skills. Your brain is highly elastic. Give it a chance to use that ability.

What’s your biggest issue?
How do you handle it – or can you think of any additional tips you can share with others if you don’t have an issue with this in your life?

Share them with us in our Comments – or share this blog post on Twitter or Facebook or wherever you feel it could help someone you know.

Cheers, Helene Malmsio

Related Reading: https://www.discoveryhub.net/how-to-reverse-the-effects-of-aging.html

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