13 (Simple) Ways to Reduce the Risk of Dementia

dementia

Even though many people have believed that dementia is a disease, it’s actually not. It’s just an umbrella term for a range of symptoms that deal with an individual losing their memory. This type of memory loss can become so extreme that it interferes with an individual’s day to day life.

There are many different kinds of dementia which we will get into later on in this guide, but the whole purpose of this guide as a whole is to help you better understand what dementia is and how you can prevent it by making healthy lifestyle changes in your day to day life.

This article will help to motivate you and encourage you’re to reduce the risk of these possible conditions. You’ll be able to better perform at everyday activities, and you’ll find that your focus has improved when you take these changes seriously.

After you finish reading over this guide, let us know what changes you see yourself taking part in!

What is Dementia?

Dementia is what describes a range of symptoms[1] that will decrease your mental capacity, focus, and memory. Many people who deal with dementia on a daily basis, suffer greatly from short-term memory loss. This means they will often lose things, forget to pay bills, or even forgetting where they are in the moment.

When you start to develop dementia and it’s variations, they are progressive problems, which means that it starts off barely noticeable and continues to get worse over time.

This means that if you or a close one to you is experiencing strange memory issues, you need to take them to a doctor to be able to tell if they are dealing with memory issues caused by dementia.

When you take someone or yourself who is suffering from early signs of dementia, you’ll be able to be involved in trials and tests to plan for the future and to also slow down the effect they might have on you.

Don’t be scared to go seek help, you should never feel like you can’t ask for help when you know something like dementia is occurring or you just feel off when it comes to memory and focus. Speak out and let your voice be heard, there are many changes you can introduce into your life to see a difference.

Below we’ll walk you through different topics that are important to keep in mind when moving forward, such as the different kinds of dementia, the causes, and various ways to prevent dementia altogether.

Dementia Info

What are the Different Types of Dementia?

There are many different kinds of dementia[2] you should be aware of, we’ve listed them below for you to look over.

  • Alzheimer’s Disease: Most common among types of dementia, this disease is commonly known because the individual will have trouble remembering recent conversations, or anything that is within the short term. Poor choices, judgement, and overall generally being confused.
  • Vascular Dementia: Very uncommon, but it hinders the ability to make choices, or stay organized. There is serious memory loss, and strokes can occur easier.
  • Dementia with Lewy Bodies: This is also a form of mixed dementia, but there are many cases where this type of dementia is known for the intense movement problems.
  • Mixed Dementia: Contains more than one type of dementia, symptoms will vary.
  • Parkinson’s Disease: There are severe problems with moving and field of depth, which can cause falls or uncomfortable shaking.
  • Frontotemporal Dementia: This type of dementia will typically change your personality and overall behavior. Many also have problems talking.

Overall there are many different kinds of dementia that are a risk for older individuals, but below, we’ll show you the causes of dementia and how they play a role in the different branches of this problem. Hopefully, by going through all of these cases, you’ll be able to introduce even more changes into your life.

What are the Causes of Dementia?

There are many causes of dementia that we’ll include below:

Causes Of Dementia

  • Vascular: The most common cause of dementia which is vascular dementia. This causes brain cell death because of heart attack or stroke in older age. This will prevent a healthy blood flow to the brain.
  • Injury: A very serious injury can trigger brain cell death over time, which will cause dementia very quickly.
  • Prion: They can also be caused by Prion Diseases, which affect the brain at any age.
  • HIV: HIV has been known to damage brain cells over time which can lead to variations of dementia at any age.

What are the Ways to Prevent Dementia?

These lifestyle changes will help slow down the effects of dementia[3] so you can live a long and healthy life without constantly having dementia get in the way of your day to day life.

Below we’ve gathered up some simple ways you can alter your day to day lifestyle in a way that can better your overall health in many areas, while also warding off the signs f dementia early on. When you take part in these changes you’ll feel motivated to elevate your health to new heights.

Before you introduce any of these changes into your lifestyle, you should reach out to your doctor for advice on the right way to make these changes. What you should do first and what should be a goal for the future. By speaking and double checking with your doctor, you’ll have someone in your corner, making sure that you’re on the right path and staying healthy.

What changes will you introduce into your life? What do you see yourself enjoying out of this list?

1. Keep Actively Learning

Keep Actively Learning

There should never be a point in someone’s life where they quit seeking out knowledge. Not only will it expose us to more cultures and interesting things around the world, but when you choose to learn you’re also making sure that you’re keeping your mind active and focused.

A great way to do this is through learning a new language, this is something that’s exciting and new, will help you learn every day, and who knows, you could possibly visit there once you can speak the language!

2. Vegetable Juice

Raw juice in your diet[4] has been known to reduce the risk of dementia by more than half. It will keep you healthy and it’s great to keep you away with energy in the morning! This is a great and simple change you can take part in that doesn’t require a ton of changes as well.

3. Vitamin K

Adding a vitamin K supplement to your diet will help the signs of anti-ageing and can also provide you with more nutrition since it’s not found in many multivitamins. You can also bring in the vitamin into your diet by including more leafy dark greens like kale into your diet.

4. Minimize Stress

For anyone of any age, trying to reduce stress should be a goal. But when you reduce stress and anxiety as an older individual, you’ll prevent signs of dementia, compared to those elderly who have stressed and started to show signs of dementia earlier than usual.

5. Exercise Routine

Exercise Routine

You should aim to commit to regular exercise. Even if you’re just walking or swimming, anything you can do to stay active mentally and physically. Start by doing something simple, such as yoga or walking, you can work up your strength and endurance to include more weight exercises later on!

6. 15 Miles

A great goal to have is to walk at least 15 miles a week[5]. This is an estimate of the best amount of activity you can do! This might sound like a lot, but in reality, it’s only just over 2 miles a day! A great way to keep track of this is by working out on a treadmill or even having a pedometer on your phone.

7. Eat Balanced Fruits

When you add more fruits to your diet, fruits have a special compound that’s called fisetin, which can help improve focus, alertness, and also has anti-inflammatory properties. Include a wide variety as well so you can reap the benefits of many different fruits. You can also make your own smoothie as well!

8. Meditation

Meditation is a fantastic way to reduce your stress levels and focus on your breathing as well. It will also help to reduce cortisol as well, which is one of the compounds that increase risks of dementia. Take 15 minutes in the morning to just relax, keep your mind clear and focus on you. This will prepare you for the day ahead.

9. Have More Fish in Your Diet

Have More Fish In Your Diet
Fish contains omega-3 and fatty acids that will help reduce the risk of blood clotting, this can help protect you against dementia and even heart attacks. When you have more fish in your diet, you’re maintaining a healthy and balanced diet.

10. No Smoking

Everyone should quit smoking, it will cause the development of dementia very early on, in addition to all of the other negative effects that are caused by smoking for anyone at any age. Smoking comes with a whole list of negative side effects, but by quitting you’ll be improving a whole slew of issues you may have been feeling.

11. Mediterranean Diet

A Mediterranean diet[6] is a diet that is high in fish and other lean meats, with tons of omega 3 to help improve focus and thinking, while also slowing down the causes of dementia. There are so many amazing ways to introduce Mediterranean food into your diet, it’s fresh and clean eating and it will keep you focused.

12. Sleep Better

When you are well rested and get the proper amount of sleep[7], you’re also making sure that you’re stress free and the risks of dementia are less likely to form when you take care of your sleeping patterns. Try to have a bedtime each night, try to really force yourself to sleep and get up at a certain time, you’ll feel so much better having a regular schedule.

13. Lower Sugar Intake

Lower Sugar Intake

Did you know that diabetes is liked very closely to dementia? When you manage your health, especially sugar levels, you should feel a bit better and this will overall lower the risk of dementia from forming.

Conclusion

Overall, as you begin to get older, your health matters more and more. If you don’t make an effort to make healthy lifestyle changes to your diet that you stick to more than a week, you won’t be making any progress.

Take things slow and change what you can today, work towards the bigger goals as you move forward. When you add these changes into your life, not only will you be reducing your risk of dementia, but you’ll also feel better. You’ll feel more focused, energized, and aware of what’s going on around you.

Plus you’ll be so much more capable when you build up your strength and mind. Everything makes a difference, so the most important thing you can do is to decide whether or not this is worth it to you. From then on you need to stick with it.

A great way to really stick to these changes is to make a new year resolution about them, make it your goal for 2019 to make these changes and see a difference. When you push yourself to stick to a goal, you’ll go so far and accomplish so much.

It can be so easy to feel discouraged, but your ultimate goal should be to really push yourself outside of your comfort zone. Don’t worry about what others think or what they might say because of age. You’re doing what you need to do to make a difference in your life.

Will you be making these important changes this year? What changes on this list are most looking forward to taking part in?

Also, let us know what changes you already have applied to your lifestyle, do you think they’ve made a difference?

Image Credits
Feature Image: Shutterstock.com
In Post Image: https://www.mind-start.com/ & Shutterstock.com
Author

Contributor : Melissa Feldman (Cognitive Health Digest)

Melissa Feldman is an independent freelance writer and author from Toronto, Canada. Melissa lived in Tel Aviv, Israel for 18 years and worked as a content manager in the educational publishing industry. She has undergraduate degrees in both teaching and psychology and a master’s degree in Immigration and Settlement Studies. Melissa is currently working on marketing and creative projects as well as writing a novel. Melissa has been featured on many outlets, including the Content God, Wonder, Branksome Hall’s Alumni Magazine, The Read, & Eric Cohen Books. Reach out to her on LinkedIn.