Alzheimer's disease is now the 6th leading cause of death in the U.S. and kills more people each year than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. Worldside, over 46 million peple suffer from Alzheimer's a figure that's expected to nearly double every 20 years into the future.
Prevention is always preferable to treatment, and with Alzheimer's disease, it's current the only option.
What are the primary risk factors for developing Alzheimer's?
- Little to no exercise- #1 preventable factor
- Depression- 15% of Alzheimer's Cases
- Smoking- 11% of Alzheimer's Cases
- Midlife hypertension- 8% of Alzheimer Cases
- Midlife obesity- 7% of Alzheimer's Cases
- Low education/low mental stimulation- 7% of Alzheimer's Cases
- Diabetes- 3% of Alzheimer's Cases
These factors, coupled with related research, point towards several ways you my be able to reduce your risk, including:
- Protect your heart- While Alzheimer's attacks the brain, protecting your heart can shield both essential organs from life-threatening damage. This includes consuming a healthy diet, staying mentally and physically active, and maintaining normal blood pressure and cholestrol levels.
- Eat well- A recent UCLA study found that the Mediterranean Diet (rich in fruits, vegetables, olive o il, legumes, whole grains, and fish) is considered one of the best options for providing antioxidant-rich foods and reducing cognitive decline. Some studies indicate resveratrol, which occurs naturally in red grapes, red wine and dark chocolate can lower risk and slow the progrss of alzheimer's.
- Limit anticholinergic- The long term use of many popular over the counter medications like Benadryl, Dramamine, Dimetapp, Advil PM, Paxil, Unison and other co mmon sleep and allergy medications have been linked to cognitive impairment and dementia.
- Manage stress- Stress has been proven to induce negative biochemicals effects on the human body. Proven techniques for reducing stress include yoga, deep breathing, rhythmic exercise, Tai Chi, and daily meditation. Among meditation techniques, Kirtan Kriya (which takes only 12 minutes) has been shown to improve memory in those with documented memory decline.
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