Seniorjournal.com editor Tucker Sutherland offers nine simple steps to maintaining healthy minds, which were originally published in the Harvard Men’s Health Water. Sutherland’s article, “Nine Easy Steps to Fight Age-Related Memory Loss,” maintains that this outline can help deter both heart disease and dementia. Sutherland’s nine easy steps
- Find mental stimulation: “Brainy activities stimulate new connections between nerve cells and may even help the brain generate new cells.” He suggests reading, drawing or exploring new hobbies.
- Get physical exercise: “Exercise increases the number of blood vessels that bring blood to the region of the brain responsible for thought [and] it also spurs the development of nerve cells.”
- Improve your diet: “A reduced-calorie diet has been linked to a lower risk of mental decline.” Also boosting folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12 can help lower homocysteine levels, which high levels of have been linked to an increased risk of dementia.
- Improve your blood pressure: “High blood pressure in midlife increases the risk of cognitive decline.”
- Improve your cholesterol: “High level of LDL (‘bad’ cholesterol) increase the risk of dementia, as do low levels of HDL (‘good’ cholesterol).
- Avoid tobacco: “According to one study, smoking doubles the risk of dementia.”
- Don’t abuse alcohol: “Excessive drinking is a major risk factor for dementia, if you chose to drink limit yourself to two drinks per day.”
- Protect your head: “Moderate to severe head injured early in life increase the risk of cognitive impairment.”
- Build social networks: “One student linked frequent social interactions with a 42 percent reduction in dementia risk.”
And here’s a tip from Home Care Assistance Columbus: Post this list where you can be reminded the importance of making decisions that stave off age-related memory loss.