As we go on with our lives, we all hope that we can maintain our mental and physical health as long as possible. There isn’t much joy in living a long life if our final years have been painful and if we lose our ability to think and remember. As much as we may fear physical pain and illness in old age, many of us fear the possibility that we will lose our mental function and end up being completely helpless in a nursing home.
Often the first hint that our memories begin to lose their sharpness occurs during the fifth decade of our life. As people reach middle age, they begin to notice more frequent amnesia, especially short-term memory. They may go into a room to do something and forget what it is. They may not remember the names of the people who used to live next to them. And they may start to worry that their forgetfulness is more than just a harmless event.They worry that this might be the first hint of something more sinister – it could be a symptom of Alzheimer’s.
Alzheimer’s is the name for a very serious brain disease in which brain cells are killed by tiny plaques and entangled fibers. The parts of the brain that are needed to make and access recent memories are often destroyed first. The destruction of brain cells spreads to other parts of the brain, resulting in loss of function and eventual death.
There is currently no known cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists are competing to learn about the cause or cause of Alzheimer’s disease and find ways to stop brain damage when it begins. As baby boomers get older, millions of them are at risk for serious Alzheimer’s and brain disease.
Alzheimer’s disease is not the only cause of loss of brain function in the elderly.There are many other causes that can lead to reduced mental abilities or to dementia in the later years. Come
Fortunately, you can learn what risk factors are involved in the higher chances of developing problems, and you can take steps to fix them.
And the good news is, you don’t have to choose between caring for your heart or caring for your brain.
High blood pressure is a major risk factor for developing dementia. Not only high blood pressure But directly destroys brain cells But it also increases the risk of stroke, which leads to the permanent destruction of brain cells. To prevent stroke, have your blood pressure checked regularly and if your blood pressure is too high, talk to your doctor to bring it to a safe level.
People with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing dementia. If you have diabetes, it is very important to keep your blood sugar under control.
If you want to protect your brain over the long term, avoid drinking too much alcohol. Long-term consumption of more than two alcoholic beverages per day can directly damage brain cells and deplete the body’s nutrients needed to function, especially vitamin B1 (thiamin).
Every year hundreds of thousands of people suffer brain injuries as a result of car accidents. Many of these trauma can be prevented or reduced by slowing down while driving and wearing seat belts.
We know that some elders can live in the eighties and ninety years with their sharp minds and their bodies still exhilarating. Will we be among the lucky ones? Is it just a matter of randomness? Is the loss of strength as we age inevitable?
The good news is, statistically, the odds are on your side. Most people can think clearly as they get older unless they have Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, or diabetes. As long as the brain remains healthy, older adults can maintain their ability to learn, think and remember, even if it takes longer to process thoughts than it used to. And in some forms of mental skills, older adults can outperform the younger ones!
By studying the health behaviors of older people who go into old age with their minds and bodies intact, scientists have discovered some factors that appear to be related to improved mental function in old age.
Based on these studies, scientists believe that some of the factors that influence mental wellbeing over the years are under your control.
There is some evidence to suggest that people following a high-antioxidant diet have lower rates of Alzheimer’s. Fresh vegetables and fruits, especially brightly colored fruits and vegetables, tend to be high in antioxidants, which help repair the body’s cellular damage caused by harmful chemicals known as free radicals.
People who consume larger amounts of cold-water fish, such as salmon, are less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease. They also contain vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements that seem to have protective effects on the brain. Higher intake of folic acid was associated with a lower incidence of Alzheimer’s disease.
Persistent learning people who read, write and acquire new skills tend to have sharpened mental skills as they age. Scientists think that perhaps learning new things will help brain cells become more connected.
If you want to follow in the footsteps of those who can reach their later years with both their body and mind in good shape, focus on eating well, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep.
Reduce stress by learning to relax, have fun with your family and friends, and find ways to connect to a cause more than yourself. Keep learning and look for ways to be happy no matter what situation you are in.