Five Lifestyle Changes that May Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease

It is estimated that more than five million people in the United States have Alzheimer’s disease, which, according the National Institute on Aging, could very well triple by the year 2025. However, the amount of people that the disease affects far exceeds this millions of family members’ lives are consumed by what is often referred to as ‘the cruellest of diseases’.

Thankfully, the Obama administration has recently announced the National Alzheimer’s Plan. This initiative aims to find a cure for Alzheimer’s – or at least effective treatment by the year 2025.

In the meantime, there are a number of measures and lifestyle changes that can be taken in order which may prevent the disease from developing. The following tips have all shown promise in extensive clinical trials, but please be sure to consult a physician before making any significant changes to your diet and/or lifestyle.

Cucumin

Cucumin is a close relative of the ginger plant and can often be found a variety of curry dishes. It has been proven to help prevent the formation of alpha-synuclein proteins, which are a key contributor to the onset of Alzheimer’s. For those who aren’t a fan of curry, try adding some curcumin supplements to your diet. However, do be sure to consult your physician first, as it may interfere with certain types of medications. Those suffering from hepatitis or gall stones should be particularly careful.

Mental Stimulation

Mind-challenging activities such as crossword puzzles or Sudoku may help to slow and delay the onset of Alzheimer’s. A research institution at the University of Erlangen in Germany has also found that regular gardening and other types of woodwork have a positive impact on the brain functioning of those with Alzheimer’s disease.

Daily Walks

According to a recent BBC report, walking just one mile each day, or six miles a week, could significantly improve your odds of avoiding Alzheimer’s. Their study showed that those who walked 6 miles a week had half or less the incidence of the disease when compared to those who took little/no exercise.

Cold-water Fish

According to research carried out by the University of Maryland, the omega 3 fatty acids found in cold-water fish (salmon, tuna etc.) can reduce the amount of beta-amyloid in the blood, which is thought to be a key component of Alzheimer’s. According to the study, eating half a fillet of salmon or tuna each week can reduce the amount of beta-amyloid by 20-30%.. Vegetarians can also benefit by including almonds and walnuts in their diet.

Green Tea

A study by Newcastle University suggests that regular consumption of green tea can help in releasing enzymes which help ward off some of the key causes of Alzheimer’s.

Making changes in our diets and exercise habits can be empowering and might very well make a difference. However, experts have suggested using caution against unrealistic expectations. If you suffer from Alzheimer’s disease, or known someone who does, make sure that you are realistic about the expected changes. This said, daily exercise and mental stimulation can have a powerful positive impact on anyone’s life.

If you believe that you may be suffering from Alzheimer’s, or you are feeling the strain of caring for a family member with the disease, make sure to contact your physician straight away. It may be time to consider taking your relative to an EMI care home for further care.

 
photo credit: alles-schlumpf via photo pin cc

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