Promising research indicates that taking the following steps can help keep your mind sharp as you age:
Control cholesterol & high blood pressure
These conditions can increase your risk for heart disease and stroke, which are thought to contribute to the development of certain types of dementia. Cardiovascular health — having healthy blood sugar, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure, along with being physically active, eating a nutritious diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and not smoking — was associated with better cognitive function in a 2014 study.
Regular physical activity is thought to help maintain blood flow to the brain and reduce your risk for conditions such as high blood pressure that are associated with the development of dementia. Consistent vigorous exercise helps lower the risk for dementia, according to a study published in Annals of Medicine in 2015.
Eat a Healthy, Balanced Diet
People who consume plenty of vegetables and fatty fish and keep away from saturated fats are thought to have a lower risk for cognitive decline.
Stimulate Your Brain
Use it or lose it! People with less education are at higher risk for dementia, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, because mental stimulation throughout your lifetime is important for your brain health. Keep your mind active by increasing your level of social interaction, learning new skills, playing challenging games, and doing other activities that require an engaged mind. People who are more socially and intellectually involved are less likely to develop dementia.
Author, Julie Siefried, is the Director of Independant Living Operations and Activities Director at The Woods at Cedar Run. There, Julie presents a vibrant and exciting calendar of events that focus on education, social and spiritual needs of her residents. For more information about vibrant opportunities are available, or the variety of wonderful services that The Woods at Cedar Run provides, call her at (717) 737-3373