How to Prevent Alzheimers, the most common dementia and cause of severe memory loss
Pick One Healthy Habit to Start Today
These are all things I, a former doctor, do for myself. Alzheimers runs in my family. I really want to avoid it because I am my brain. If you feel like I do, improve your odds by picking any of these strategies or eventually all of them.
Maintain a healthy weight - BMI 25 or less. Fat cells release inflammatory hormones. Inflammation is part of the problem in Alzheimers.
Control your blood pressure, sugar, and cholesterol.
Walk, swim, cycle, dance, play raquetball or do other aerobic activity at least 20 minutes on most days.
Exercise your brain: Learn to sing a new song. Do crosswords. Take up a new hobby. Take a class. Don't retire completely. Volunteer. You get the idea. Mental exercise increases brain reserves and makes you better able to compensate for any brain damage like the B-amyloid deposits of Alzheimers.
Stay in touch with friends and family.
Eat berries frequently. Blueberries have been proven to prevent Alzheimers in rodents. Blueberries and strawberries have been shown to help memory and cognition in humans. Red apples and broccoli may help, too.
Eat foods containing the B vitamin niacin. These foods include meat, poultry, fish, beans, nuts, dairy, eggs and enriched grains. A 2005 study of 3700 people over 6 years showed that those with the highest niacin consumption from food and supplements had 40 - 70% less chance of developing Alzheimers than those with the lowest niacin consumption.
Use the spice turmeric. It makes curry powder and mustard yellow. The curcumin in turmeric is thought to be the reason there's less Alzheimers in India.
Mind, Mood, and Memory newsletter from Harvard Med School reports recently (6/11) that the following supplements may benefit brain energy metabolism: NAC, ALCAR, lipoic acid (especially with NAC or ALCAR), and SAMe.