There are 5.8 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease. By 2050, the number is expected to spike to 14 million. Every 65 seconds, someone in the U.S develops the disease. One in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or dementia, making it the sixth leading cause of death.
These staggering facts from the Alzheimer’s Association shine a light on the impact that this disease has on the senior population. June is National Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, and it is time to consider what you can do to prevent this terrible disease.
6 Ways to Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease
Exercise – Regular physical exercise can reduce your chances of developing Alzheimer’s by up to 50 percent, according to the Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation. It can also slow deterioration in those already showing signs of the disease.
Physical exercise stimulates brain activity which is always a good thing at any age. Simply walking, riding a bike, or any other light to moderate exercise can help.
Enhanced Social Interactions – Volunteering, joining a social club, or taking classes can help prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. When we feel connected to others, and develop a strong network of friends, it can prevent and slow the disease.
Healthy Eating – A healthy diet helps you to reduce inflammation levels and protect your brain. Cutting down on processed sugars, eating more fruits and vegetables, and eating more home-cooked meals can all give a positive boost to your brain health.
Better Sleep – Seven to eight hours of quality sleep can help you maintain a healthy brain. When you can create a consistent sleep schedule, take naps when you need them, and create a calming bedtime routine, you are actively working to prevent Alzheimer’s.
Mental Stimulation – Actively applying your brain power to something fulfilling can help you keep neural connections active inside your brain. So take a class, learn a language, or start memorizing literature passages. You’re never too old to be learning something new to improve your brain health.
Manage Your Stress – Chronic stress leads to chronic inflammation and can take a toll on your brain when it is left unchecked. Meditation, breathing exercises and relaxing activity can all help calm your brain.
Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month draws our attention to a serious health problem that our senior population faces. Establishing a healthy routine can keep your brain and body healthy well into the late years. Are you and your loved ones doing everything you can to help improve brain health?