Dr. Kenneth S. Kosik is a neurologist who has been researching Alzheimer's for the past 25 years, originally at Harvard Medical School and later at the University of California, Santa Barbara. While he has not found a drug or technological treatment for the disease, he has discovered lifestyle behaviors that seem to dramatically reduce the risk.
Habits of People Who Have a Low Dementia Risk
1. Physical activity lowers dementia risk. You do not need to run a marathon to benefit. Exercising three times a week for 15 to 30 minutes each time resulted in fewer cases of Alzheimer's disease, even for people who had the disease run in their family.
2. Walk a mile a day. People who walk six to nine miles a week have more gray matter in their brains.
3. Dance! Dancing not only provides physical activity, but it keeps you social. Socializing and learning new steps are both good for your brain.
4. Eat brain healthy foods ... leafy greens, vegetables, nuts, berries, beans, whole grains, fish, poultry, olive oil and wine. Eating four servings of vegetables a day can cut your cognitive decline by 40 percent.
5. Minimize unhealthy foods ... butter, margarine, red meat, cheese, sweets, desserts, fried food and fast food.
6. Use brain healthy spices, especially curry and turmeric. They contain the antioxidant curcumin, which can reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease, cancer, arthritis and depression.
7. Make friends and spend time with them. As mentioned above, socializing is very important. People who spend time with others had a 70 percent lower rate of cognitive decline over a 12 year period.
8 Take on mentally stimulating tasks. Research shows that you can postpone dementia by nearly a decade by exercising your brain. Here are some activities you could try: read both fiction and non-fiction (especially new topics), play board games, practice a musical instrument, work on puzzles, draw, paint or sculpt.
How to Learn More about Reducing Alzheimer's Risk
Would you like to learn more about Dr. Kosik's research? You can use this link to order his book "Outsmarting Alzheimer's" from Amazon. It is available in both hardcover and paperback versions. You may also be interested in the other books on dementia shown below. They are well worth reading.
If you want to know more about common health issues as we age, where to retire, financial planning, family relationships and more, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of the page to find links to hundreds of other helpful articles.
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