Thursday, April 19, 2018
What is Alzheimer's Disease?
What is it?
Alzheimer's is a progressive disease of memory loss and thinking difficulties. It involves protein fragments called plaques and tangles , which are suspected of disrupting communication among nerve cells in the brain.
Who is most at risk?
People over age 65,those with a family history of the disease, and those with certain genetic mutations in a gene called APOE. Mild cognitive impairment, severe head trauma, and lack of social and intellectual engagement appear to raise risk, too. there's also evidence that the odds of getting the disease with unhealthy behaviors such as smoking or as being sedentary.
How to prevent it:
" A healthy heart life-style is a brain-healthy lifestyle, " potentially reducing Alzhiemer 's disease symptoms by as much as 40%, says Pierre Tariot, director of the Banner Alzheimer's disease Institute in Phoenix and a professor at The University of Arizona Medical School. The goal is to lower inflammation to keep blood vessels and the brain cells healthy, since "the cardiovascular system provides the pipes that provide blood to our brain," says Tariot.
Follow the Mind Diet:
This diet focuses on the 10 brain-healthy foods including beans, berries, fish, nuts, vegetables, and whole grains. The diet-developed by Martha Clare Morris, a nutritional epidemiologist at Rush University's medical school, along with several colleagues-emphasizes the importance of eating these foods while severely limiting consumption of butter, cheese, and fried and fast foods. One study showed that this diet can lower the risk of developing Alzheimer's by 53% if followed rigorously.
Exercise regularly and maintain normal blood pressure.
Get enough sleep" Aim for 7 to 8 hours a night. Beta-amyloid, one of the proteins associated with Alzheimer's, diminishes in sleep. Plus, " the brain literally clears itself out " during sleep, says Rudolph Tanzi, a neurology professor at Harvard University and director of Massachusetts General Hospital's Genetics and Aging research Unit.
Try Brain Training Excercises. The recent Advanced Cognitive Training for Independent and Vital Elderly Study, funded by the National Institute On Aging, found that cognitive activities showed help in enhancing reasoning and showed promise in keeping Alzheimer's at bay.