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Alzheimer’s Disease is a progressive type of dementia that causes deteriorations in memory, thinking, and behavior. Five million Americans have Alzheimer’s. This disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S. and the 5th leading cause among people aged 65 and older.

Although there’s no proven measure to prevent Alzheimer’s, health-related behaviors can reduce the risk. November is Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, so it’s an excellent time to adopt some healthy lifestyle changes.

Exercise

Most adults need 30 minutes of moderate exercise five-six times per week. If nothing else, fit in small amounts of activity when you can. For instance, take the stairs instead of the elevator, and park further away from buildings.

Healthy Diet

Antioxidants decrease inflammation and reduce adverse effects of aging. They’re found in the Mediterranean diet, which includes legumes and nuts, fruits and vegetables, olive oil, whole grains, and protein from fish and poultry.

Brain Health

Playing puzzles and games might not directly slow down Alzheimer’s. Still, they can keep the brain healthy and slow cognitive decline. Try the crossword puzzle in the daily newspaper, or download a Sudoku app on your smartphone. Also, take on a new skill or hobby, such as chess, writing, quilting, or photography.

Sleep

Getting enough sleep is a serious matter, especially when it comes to slowing Alzheimer’s. Do your best to get seven to eight hours of sleep each night, which is even more important in later life.

Know the Symptoms

It’s no cause for alarm to forget where you put your glasses. However, you should start to worry if you’re holding your glasses and don’t know how to use them. Know the early signs of Alzheimer’s so that you can take proactive measures if you’re diagnosed. Early symptoms include:

  • Difficulty with routine tasks
  • Frequent memory loss
  • Trouble paying bills or handling monetary transactions
  • Unexpected changes in mood or personality

 

Alzheimer’s has no cure, but you can do a great deal to keep your brain healthy or slow the disease’s progression. Keep in mind these lifestyle changes and stay informed about healthy brain functioning.