There is a clear theme to the latest Alzheimer’s research: if you want to protect your aging brain, you need to change your lifestyle. With an aging population at risk NOW, and several more years needed for scientists to prove that specific drugs are capable off at least delaying the onset of Alzheimer’s disease – change is needed immediately.
So far, the lifestyle changes that we have mentioned here are more promising than any drug study. Even if there were some magical breakthrough in the field of medicine, these lifestyle changes would still be able to help in a number of different ways.
Change #1 – Eating healthy
In order to support the arteries that ensure proper blood flow to the brain, it is important to eat a diet that is lower in fat and sugar and higher in fruits in vegetables. The risk of dementia later in life increases with type II diabetes. A healthy diet reduces the risk of an impaired older brain.
Change #2 – Stay active
Physical activity is good for the heart and good for the brain. Regular physical activity can counter a number of different problems, including high cholesterol, diabetes, and high blood pressure. All of those can increase the risk of developing problems with your memory later on.
Change #3 – Exercise your brain
There is a reason that seniors are often advised to learn a new language, take music lessons, use the computer, or work crossword puzzles. These are all methods to keep the brain engaged. Researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden found that there is a link between the early effects of learning and dementia. This means it is important to start early. Complex thinking and learning strengthen the connections between nerve cells. This helps build up what is called “cognitive reserves.”
Change #4 – Get better sleep
In a study with more than 6,000 people, researchers were able to link early memory problems with poor sleep quality. The primary issue with poor sleep quality was sleep apnea. Other studies have shown that not getting enough sleep, or poor sleep, can lead to the production of amyloid – a brain-clogging protein that is often identified in Alzheimer’s disease.
This is why it is important that you speak to your doctor if you believe that you have sleep problems. One restless night will not put you in danger, but many of them might.