Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is increasing at alarming rates. If you’ve ever had a loved one or even known someone with it, you know it isn’t any fun.
For those less familiar, AD shows up as an inability to think, do normal everyday activities or recall people. Imagine going to see your grandmother and she doesn’t recognize you. She can’t tie her shoes or take a bath. She gets agitated and disoriented easily.
Not any fun.
What You Can Do
If you want to avoid this kind of problem, there are numerous things you can do.
In a large controlled study, The National Institutes of Health (NIH) studied the effect of mental training in seniors (65 and older). The research was published in December, 2006 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
The results were very positive. After attending only 10 hour-long sessions of brain training, their mental quickness, memory and reasoning all improved.
Even more impressive, five years later these improvements were still noticeable. This was particularly true for people in the training groups that had subsequent booster training sessions.
The bottom line message from this is that using your brain keeps you mentally strong. It’s not unlike how exercise keeps your body strong.
Here is a list of specific things you can do to avoid, or at least reduce, loss of mental function in your later years.
- Stimulate your brain: Avoid routine. Enjoy new sensory experiences. Challenge your mind and body with new situations.
- Reduce stress: Make time do things you enjoy. Practice relaxation techniques such as meditation or deep breathing. Eliminate people and situations in your life that overload you.
- Exercise: Short interval cardiovascular workouts bring more oxygen to your brain and promote brain growth factors. Even walking briskly will help.
- Challenge your mind: Do puzzles, play games and give yourself interesting and demanding intellectual tasks. Learn new information by taking classes or reading.
- Stay healthy: Eat a nutritious diet according to your Metabolic Type®, get plenty of sleep, avoid smoking, and if you use alcohol, drink in moderation.
- Do things you love to do: When you’re passionate about something it challenges you, stimulates your thinking and keeps you focused.
- Laugh: Laughing releases endorphins (natural pain killers) and other powerful and effective chemicals into our system. It also triggers a deep relaxation response afterwards. Besides, it’s fun!
All of the above will give you a great head start towards avoiding Alzheimer’s Disease.
For a list of other ways to keep your brain strong and clear, see the article, “22 Ways to Overclock Your Brain.”