Dementia is predicted to become the biggest killer in the 21st century, with one individual developing the disease every three minutes.
Fortunately, there are many things you can do in order to help lessen your risk of developing dementia.
According to a study from the University of Cambridge, it is suggested that one in every 3 cases of Alzheimer’s disease, which is the most common form of dementia, could be avoided only if people changed their lifestyle to minimize their risk.
Check out these 7 ways you can reduce your dementia risk
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1- Stay Active!
You should engage in some sort of physical activity for at least 30 minutes, 5 times a week.
Maintaining regular exercise, particularly in middle-aged or older adults lessens the risk of developing dementia.
You have to keep active enough to boost your heart rate, so you may consider swimming, cycling, walking, or joining exercise groups or dance classes.
Furthermore, controlled sessions of aerobic and resistance exercise can help individuals in their fifties to enhance their thinking skills as well.
2- Don’t Smoke
In case you already are a smoker, then make efforts to stop.
Smoking puts you at even greater risk of developing dementia as well as damaging your lungs, heart, and blood circulation.
If you’re willing to quit smoking, there are many ways, people, and organizations that can help your do so. You may want to consider an NHS Stop Smoking Service.
According to several studies, individuals who smoke are at greater risk of dementia than non-smokers. Moreover, those who used to smoke and have quit had a similar risk to non-smokers.
3- Eat a Balanced and Healthy Diet
You need to maintain a healthy and balanced diet with a high intake of olive oil, unrefined cereals, vegetables, fruits, and oily fish, and a low proportion of sugar and red meat.
This kind of foods together are also known as the Mediterranean diet and can help you lessen your risk of dementia by decreasing inflammation as well as your chances of developing cardiovascular disease, which is a risk factor for dementia.
Moreover, it is recommended to avoid consuming saturated fat, such as in biscuits, cakes, and most cheeses, and also limit both your sugary and salty treats.
4- Limit Your Alcohol Intake
Make sure to keep your alcohol intake within the recommended limits. However, you need to be aware that there had been a change in 2016 in these limits.
Now, the limits are a top of 14 units per week, spread over three or more days. Decreased limits are suggested for older people since their bodies deal with alcohol in a different way.
14 units can be around 7 pints of beer or lager with a lower alcohol content or 4 or 5 glasses of wine.
5- Monitor Your Health
You should be more excited to go to your regular mid-life healthy check up.
Your doctor will examine your weight, blood pressure, and probably your cholesterol level.
These are all associated with dementia and other conditions, such as diabetes, stroke, and heart disease, that are powerful risk factors for dementia.
6- Maintain a Healthy Weight
You should commit to keeping a healthy weight, as it will also lessen your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and thus perhaps of dementia.
The best thing you can do to maintain a healthy weight is to follow a regular and proper exercise and diet.
You can keep a small diary to note the quantity of food you’ve eaten and the type of exercise for every day.
Don’t forget that alcohol includes hidden calories.
7- Give Your Brain a Daily Workout
You are more likely to minimize your risk of developing dementia if you can keep your mind active.
You can do this through many things, such as playing chess or cards, reading, solving puzzles, or learning something new like another language.
Make sure to do various brain training activities on a regular basis to train your brain, challenge it, and keep it active and healthy. This may also improve your reasoning and memorizing abilities.
Furthermore, being a socially engaged person can also help lessen your dementia risk. You can join a club, volunteer, invite people or visit them.