What is Alzheimer’s Disease (or AD)?

“Alzheimer’s is a degenerative brain disease that is caused by complex brain changes following cell damage. It leads to dementia symptoms that gradually worsen over time. The most common early symptom of Alzheimer’s is trouble remembering new information because the disease typically impacts the part of the brain associated with learning first” (Alz.org). AD is a vicious disease that affects more than 5 million adults 65+ in the U.S. and that number is predicted to triple by 2050 according to a new report made by the Alzheimer’s Association. 

There are still many unknowns about the disease, but if you follow the recommendations discussed below for living an overall healthier lifestyle, some recent studies do show that there is potential to reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease.

Can I prevent developing Alzheimer’s Disease?

At this time, there is nothing that can be done to stop, slow, or cure the disease.  However, there have been studies conducted that show positive results on how we can take preventative measures now to reduce our risk of getting the disease in the future.  

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, as many as 80% of the individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s also had cardiovascular diseases.  More research is needed to understand the link between the two, but studies have shown a significant connection.  

Physical exercise is thought to possibly lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s because exercise delivers an increased flow of blood and oxygen to your brain.  

A heart-healthy diet might also be a good measure to take to limit your risk of developing Alzheimer’s.  Foods such as nuts, olives, fruits, vegetables and whole grains are all beneficial foods you can add to your diet that are actually good for your heart! The Mediterranean Diet is full of these foods. It is supported by the American Heart Association and many medical professionals. It is regaled for being both heart and brain supportive. 

Self-Care is Important.

Mention of self-care is everywhere these days – but that is because it really is so important. Take time for yourself, whether that be through exercise, healthier food choices, relaxation or meditation. These self-care practices support an overall healthier lifestyle that can help prevent the onset of many diseases.

The Alzheimer’s Association offers a wealth of information on the disease and lifestyle tips for the prevention of AD and other ailments and diseases.  We found this article to be particularly beneficial.

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