Preventing Alzheimer's and Dementia—or Slowing its Progress - HelpGuide.org (2023)

Worried about Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia? These strategies can improve brain health as you age, reduce your risk of dementia, or delay its progression if you’ve already been diagnosed.

Preventing Alzheimer's and Dementia—or Slowing its Progress - HelpGuide.org (1)

Can Alzheimer's and dementia be prevented or slowed?

Alzheimer’s disease is one of the biggest concerns many of us have as we get older. The thought of developing the disease can be a frightening prospect, especially if you’ve witnessed a loved one affected by dementia. While you may have been told that all you can do is hope for the best and wait for a pharmaceutical cure, the truth is much more encouraging. Promising research shows that there are steps you can take to both reduce your risk of developing symptoms of Alzheimer’s and other dementias, or slow the process of deterioration if you’ve already been diagnosed.

By identify and controlling your personal risk factors and making simple but effective lifestyle changes, you can maximize your chances of lifelong brain health and preserve your cognitive abilities for longer.

Alzheimer’s is a complex disease with multiple risk factors. Some, like your age and genetics, are outside your control. However, there are seven pillars for a brain-healthy lifestyle that are within your control:

  1. Regular exercise
  2. Social engagement
  3. Healthy diet
  4. Mental stimulation
  5. Quality sleep
  6. Stress management
  7. Vascular health

Experts now believe that the risk of Alzheimer’s is not limited to old age, but in fact can start in the brain long before symptoms are detected, often in middle age. That means that it’s never too early to start taking care of your brain health.

The more you strengthen each of the seven pillars in your daily life, the longer—and stronger—your brain will stay working. You’ll also be better able to reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia, or delay the onset of more severe symptoms.

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(Video) Wisdom for Alzheimer's Caregivers: Tips from Patti Davis, author of "Floating in the Deep End"

Pillar #1: Regular exercise

According to the Alzheimer's Research and Prevention Foundation, regular physical exercise can reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease by up to 50 percent. What's more, exercise can also slow further deterioration in those who have already started to develop cognitive problems. Exercise protects against Alzheimer's and other types of dementia by stimulating the brain's ability to maintain old connections as well as make new ones.

Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week. The ideal plan involves a combination of cardio exercise and strength training. Good activities for beginners include walking and swimming.

Build muscle to pump up your brain. Moderate levels of weight and resistance training not only increase muscle mass, they help you maintain brain health. For those over 65, adding 2-3 strength sessions to your weekly routine may cut your risk of Alzheimer's in half.

[Read: Best Exercises for Health and Weight Loss]

Include balance and coordination exercises. Head injuries from falls are an increasing risk as you age, which in turn increase your risk for Alzheimer's disease and dementia. As well as protecting your head when you exercise (wearing a sports helmet when cycling, for example), balance and coordination exercises can help you stay agile and avoid spills. Try yoga, Tai Chi, or exercises using balance balls.

Tips for starting and sticking with an exercise plan

If you've been inactive for a while, starting an exercise program can be intimidating. But remember: a little exercise is better than none. In fact, adding just modest amounts of physical activity to your weekly routine can have a profound effect on your health.

Choose activities you enjoy and start small—a 10-minute walk a few times a day, for example—and allow yourself to gradually build up your momentum and self-confidence.

Pillar #2: Social engagement

Human beings are highly social creatures. We don't thrive in isolation, and neither do our brains. Staying socially engaged may even protect against symptoms of Alzheimer's disease and dementia in later life, so make developing and maintaining a strong network of friends a priority.

You don't need to be a social butterfly or the life of the party, but you do need to regularly connect face-to-face with someone who cares about you and makes you feel heard. While many of us become more isolated as we get older, it's never too late to meet others and develop new friendships:

  • Volunteer.
  • Join a club or social group.
  • Visit your local community center or senior center.
  • Take group classes (such as at the gym or a community college).
  • Get to know your neighbors.
  • Make a weekly date with friends.
  • Get out (go to the park, museums, and other public places).

Pillar #3: Healthy diet

In Alzheimer's disease, inflammation and insulin resistance injure neurons and inhibit communication between brain cells. Alzheimer's is sometimes described as “diabetes of the brain,” and a growing body of research suggests a strong link between metabolic disorders and the signal processing systems. By adjusting your eating habits, however, you can help reduce inflammation and protect your brain.

Manage your weight. Extra pounds are a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. A major study found that people who were overweight in midlife were twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s down the line, and those who were obese had three times the risk.Losing weight can go a long way to protecting your brain.

Cut down on sugar. Sugary foods and refined carbs such as white flour, white rice, and pasta can lead to dramatic spikes in blood sugar which inflame your brain. Watch out for hidden sugar in all kinds of packaged foods from cereals and bread to pasta sauce and low or no-fat products.

Enjoy a Mediterranean diet. Several epidemiological studies show that eating a Mediterranean diet dramatically reduces the risk of decline from cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease. That means plenty of vegetables, beans, whole grains, fish and olive oil—and limited processed food.

Get plenty of omega-3 fats. Evidence suggests that the DHA found in these healthy fats may help prevent Alzheimer's disease and dementia by reducing beta-amyloid plaques. Food sources include cold-water fish such as salmon, tuna, trout, mackerel, seaweed, and sardines. You can also supplement with fish oil.

Stock up on fruit and vegetables. When it comes to fruits and vegetables, the more the better. Eat up across the color spectrum to maximize protective antioxidants and vitamins, including green leafy vegetables, berries, and cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli.

Cook at home often. By cooking at home, you can ensure that you're eating fresh, wholesome meals that are high in brain-healthy nutrients and low in sugar, salt, unhealthy fat, and additives.

(Video) Stage 6 & 7: The 7 Stages of Alzheimer's Dementia Symptoms Explained

Drink only in moderation. While there appear to be brain benefits in consuming red wine in moderation, heavy alcohol consumption can dramatically raise the risk of Alzheimer’s and accelerate brain aging.

Pillar #4: Mental stimulation

It's important to continue learning new things and challenging your brain throughout life. Whether you’re looking to prevent the onset of dementia or delay its progression, when it comes to your brain the key is to “use it or lose it.” In the groundbreaking NIH ACTIVE study, older adults who received as few as 10 sessions of mental training not only improved their cognitive functioning in daily activities in the months after the training, but continued to show long-lasting improvements 10 years later.

Activities involving multiple tasks or requiring communication, interaction, and organization offer the greatest benefits. Set aside time each day to stimulate your brain:

Learn something new. Study a foreign language, practice a musical instrument, or learn to paint or sew. One of the best ways to take up a new hobby is to sign up for a class and then schedule regular times for practicing. The greater the novelty, complexity, and challenge, the greater the benefit.

Raise the bar for an existing activity. If you're not keen on learning something new, you can still challenge your brain by increasing your skills and knowledge of something you already do. For example, if you can play the piano and don't want to learn a new instrument, commit to learning a new piece of music or improving how well you play your favorite piece.

Practice memorization techniques. For example, make up a sentence in which the first letter of each word represents the initial of what you want to remember, such as using the sentence “Every good boy does fine” to memorize the notes of the treble clef, E, G, B, D, and F. Creating rhymes and patterns can strengthen your memory connections.

Enjoy strategy games, puzzles, and riddles. Brain teasers and strategy games provide a great mental workout and build your capacity to form and retain cognitive associations. Do a crossword puzzle, play board games, cards, or word and number games such as Scrabble or Sudoku.

Follow the road less traveled. Take a new route or eat with your non-dominant hand. Vary your habits regularly to create new brain pathways.

Pillar #5: Quality sleep

There are a number of links between poor sleep patterns and the development of Alzheimer’s and dementia. Some studies have emphasized the importance of quality sleep for flushing out toxins in the brain. Others have linked poor sleep to higher levels of beta-amyloid in the brain, a sticky protein that can further disrupt the deep sleep necessary for memory formation.

If nightly sleep deprivation is slowing your thinking and or affecting your mood, you may be at greater risk of developing or deteriorating symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. To help improve your sleep:

Establish a regular sleep schedule. Going to bed and getting up at the same time reinforces your natural circadian rhythms. Your brain's clock responds to regularity.

Set the mood. Reserve your bed for sleep and sex, and ban television and computers from the bedroom (both are stimulating and may lead to difficulties falling asleep).

Create a relaxing bedtime ritual. Take a hot bath, do some light stretches, listen to relaxing music, or dim the lights. As it becomes habit, your nightly ritual will send a powerful signal to your brain that it's time for deep restorative sleep.

Quiet your inner chatter. When stress, anxiety, or worrying keeps you awake, get out of bed. Try reading or relaxing in another room for twenty minutes then hop back in.

Get screened for sleep apnea. If you've received complaints about your snoring, you may want to get tested for sleep apnea, a potentially dangerous condition where breathing is disrupted during sleep. Treatment can make a huge difference in both your health and sleep quality.

Pillar #6: Stress management

Chronic or persistent stress can take a heavy toll on the brain, leading to shrinkage in a key memory area, hampering nerve cell growth, and increasing the risk of Alzheimer's disease and dementia. Yet simple stress management tools can minimize its harmful effects and protect your brain.

(Video) How You Can Prevent Dementia | EXPLAINED

Breathe! Quiet your stress response with deep, abdominal breathing. Restorative breathing is powerful, simple, and free!

Schedule daily relaxation activities. Keeping stress under control requires regular effort. Learning relaxation techniques such as meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, or yoga can help you unwind and reverse the damaging effects of stress.

[Listen: Progressive Muscle Relaxation meditation]

Nourish inner peace. Regular meditation, prayer, reflection, and religious practice may immunize you against the damaging effects of stress.

Make fun a priority. All work and no play is not good for your stress levels or your brain. Make time for leisure activities that bring you joy, whether it be stargazing, playing the piano, or working on your bike.

Keep your sense of humor. This includes the ability to laugh at yourself. The act of laughing helps your body fight stress.

Pillar #7: Vascular health

There’s more and more evidence to indicate that what’s good for your heart is also good for your brain. Maintaining your cardiovascular health can be crucial in protecting your brain and lowering your risk for different types of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia. And of course, addressing heart-health issues can also help you to lower your risk for a future heart attack or stroke.

Control your blood pressure

Hypertension or high blood pressure is strongly associated with an increased risk of dementia. High blood pressure can damage tiny blood vessels in the parts of the brain responsible for cognition and memory. The latest American Heart Association guidelines class blood pressure readings of 130/80 mm Hg and above as the start of high blood pressure.

Check your blood pressure at home. A study in the Netherlands found that a large variation in blood pressure readings over a period of years was associated with an increased risk of dementia. Inexpensive monitors that wrap around your upper arm can help you keep track of your blood pressure throughout the day and pick up on any variations. Some devices even send the results to your phone so you can easily track your readings or share them with your doctor.

[Read: Blood Pressure and Your Brain]

Make healthy diet and lifestyle changes. Exercising, trimming your waistline, lowering your stress, and reducing your salt, caffeine, and alcohol intake can all help to lower your blood pressure. Try to cut back on takeout, canned, and processed food which tend to be high in sodium and replace them with fresh vegetables and fruit.

The DASH diet for lowering blood pressure

The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, or DASH diet, is a specially designed eating plan to help you lower your blood pressure. When combined with a reduction in salt, the DASH diet may help lower your blood pressure without the need for medication. See “Get more help” below.

Take any medication your doctor recommends. Research from Johns Hopkins found that those prescribed antihypertensive medication to control high blood pressure lowered their dementia risk by about a third.

Don’t ignore low blood pressure. While it affects far fewer of us, low blood pressure (hypotension) can also reduce blood flow to the brain. While the American Heart Association offers no specific measurement for when blood pressure is considered too low, symptoms such as dizziness, blurred vision, and unsteadiness when standing may indicate a problem.

Other vascular health tips

Watch your cholesterol levels. Studies also suggests there may be a connection between high cholesterol and Alzheimer’s and dementia, especially having high cholesterol levels in mid-life. Improving your levels can be good for both your brain and your heart.

(Video) 5: Decisions for Loved Ones With Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementia

Stop smoking. Smoking is one of the most preventable risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. One study found that smokers over the age of 65 have a nearly 80% higher risk of Alzheimer’s than those who have never smoked. When youstop smoking, the brain benefits from improved circulation almost immediately.

Women and Alzheimer’s risk

Women are about twice as likely as men to develop Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers believe this higher risk can be linked to a decrease in fertility and the onset of menopause in middle age. As a woman, the drop in estrogen not only triggers symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats, but it can also affect your brain. Since estrogen protects brain cells from aging, a large decrease during menopause may make you more vulnerable to Alzheimer’s later in life.

Hormone replacement therapy can carry risks, but there’s evidence to suggest that taking supplemental estrogen before menopause may help lower your chances of developing dementia. Using the seven pillars in middle age can also be beneficial, especially adopting a healthy diet. Eating foods rich in antioxidants such as fruit, leafy green vegetables, and nuts may help protect your brain, while flaxseeds, soy, nuts, red wine, and fruits such as strawberries, peaches, and apricots can help naturally boost estrogen levels.

While research into the menopause-Alzheimer’s link is still at an early stage, the more preventative steps you can start taking in your 40s and 50s—or even earlier—the more you’ll lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s as you age.

Authors: Melinda Smith, M.A., Lawrence Robinson, and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D.

    Get more help

    Assessing Risk for Alzheimer's Disease – Current strategies for preventing Alzheimer’s disease. (National Institute on Aging)

    High Blood Pressure and Dementia – How high blood pressure can affect brain function and what you can do about it. (Alzheimer's Society)

    DASH Eating Plan: Lower Your Blood Pressure (PDF) – Reducing high blood pressure through diet. (National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute)

    Can Menopause Jump-Start Alzheimer’s? – Examines the link between Alzheimer’s and menopause. (Being Patient)

    Last updated: October 7, 2022

    (Video) What are the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease? Symptoms of Late-to-End-Stage Alzheimer’s Disease

    FAQs

    How can you prevent Alzheimer's and dementia? ›

    These include:
    1. stopping smoking.
    2. keeping alcohol to a minimum.
    3. eating a healthy, balanced diet, including at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables every day.
    4. exercising for at least 150 minutes every week by doing moderate-intensity aerobic activity (such as cycling or fast walking), or as much as you're able to.

    What are some coping strategies for dementia? ›

    Set realistic goals and focus on what you can do today. Set realistic expectations for yourself and use the skills you have to be successful in dealing with challenging tasks. Some tasks may become too difficult for you to complete even with reminder aids. Reduce stress by asking family or friends for help, if needed.

    What foods help prevent dementia? ›

    Ingredients of the MIND Diet
    • Leafy green vegetables, at least 6 servings/week.
    • Other vegetables, at least 1 serving/day.
    • Berries, at least 2 servings/week.
    • Whole grains, at least 3 servings/day.
    • Fish, 1 serving/week.
    • Poultry, 2 servings/week.
    • Beans, 3 servings/week.
    • Nuts, 5 servings/week.
    27 Nov 2019

    What are 5 ways to help prevent dementia? ›

    This means you can help reduce your risk of dementia by:
    1. eating a healthy, balanced diet.
    2. maintaining a healthy weight.
    3. exercising regularly.
    4. keeping alcohol within recommended limits.
    5. stopping smoking.
    6. keeping your blood pressure at a healthy level.

    What vitamins help prevent dementia? ›

    Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid: Being deficient in both Vitamin B12 and folic acid is common in those with dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Taken together, these two supplements can help lower the levels of an amino acid in the blood that is often linked to dementia.

    Can you stop Alzheimer's from progressing? ›

    "The most convincing evidence is that physical exercise helps prevent the development of Alzheimer's or slow the progression in people who have symptoms," says Dr. Marshall. "The recommendation is 30 minutes of moderately vigorous aerobic exercise, three to four days per week."

    What activities are good to prevent dementia? ›

    You can also:
    • Learn something new, such as a second language or a musical instrument.
    • Play board games with your kids or grandkids. ...
    • Work on crossword, number, or other kinds of puzzles.
    • Play online memory games or video games.
    • Read, write, or sign up for local adult education classes.
    16 Oct 2020

    What is calming for dementia patients? ›

    Use calming phrases such as: "You're safe here;" "I'm sorry that you are upset;" and "I will stay until you feel better." Let the person know you are there. Involve the person in activities. Try using art, music or other activities to help engage the person and divert attention away from the anxiety.

    What is the most important thing in caring for dementia patients? ›

    Involve the person.

    Allow the person with dementia to do as much as possible with the least amount of assistance. For example, he or she might be able to set the table with the help of visual cues or dress independently if you lay out clothes in the order they go on.

    Is coffee good for dementia? ›

    In the CAIDE study, coffee drinking of 3-5 cups per day at midlife was associated with a decreased risk of dementia/AD by about 65% at late-life. In conclusion, coffee drinking may be associated with a decreased risk of dementia/AD.

    Which fruit is best for brain? ›

    Certain fruits such as oranges, bell peppers, guava, kiwi, tomatoes, and strawberries, contain high amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps prevent brain cells from becoming damaged and supports overall brain health. In fact, a study found that vitamin C can potentially prevent Alzheimer's.

    Are eggs good for dementia? ›

    Eggs provide bioactive compounds, such as lutein, choline, zeaxanthin, and high-value proteins, that may have a protective role against dementia due to their beneficial effects on inflammation (22, 23).

    How do you stop dementia from progressing? ›

    Preventing Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia—or Slowing its...
    1. Regular exercise.
    2. Social engagement.
    3. Healthy diet.
    4. Mental stimulation.
    5. Quality sleep.
    6. Stress management.
    7. Vascular health.

    Does reading help prevent dementia? ›

    While it won't stop dementia from progressing or avert your risk of having it entirely, reading is a good way to exercise your brain, relax and engage in activity that is good for stress levels and brain health, putting you in a better position to slow cognitive aging.

    Is sleep position related to Alzheimer's? ›

    A 2019 study published in Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, showed among 165 participants (45 with diagnosed neurodegenerative disease, 120 controls) a supine sleep position (on back, head at body level) for more than 2 hours per night increased the risk of dementia by almost four times (3.7 times greater).

    What is the best natural supplement for Alzheimer's? ›

    Omega-3 fatty acid supplements

    Among the nutritional and dietary factors studied to prevent cognitive decline in older adults, the most consistent positive research findings are for omega-3 fatty acids, often measured as how much fish is consumed in the diet.

    Which side is better to sleep on for your brain? ›

    Research from the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) found that this waste clearance system works best when people sleep on their side, particularly the right side, says study coauthor Maiken Nedergaard, a professor of neuroscience and neurology at URMC, who discovered the brain's cleaning system.

    Does vitamin B help Alzheimer's? ›

    Evidence for the role of vitamin B in dementia is not clear. B vitamins are responsible for lowering homocysteine, a chemical often found at high levels in the blood of people with dementia, but some clinical trials have shown that taking B vitamins has no effect on brain function, despite their effect on homocysteine.

    What can be done to slow down Alzheimer's? ›

    How to reduce your risk of Alzheimer's and other dementias
    • Physical activity.
    • Eating healthily.
    • Don't smoke.
    • Drink less alcohol.
    • Stay mentally and socially active.
    • Take control of your health.

    How do you slow down early onset Alzheimer's? ›

    Although Alzheimer disease has no cure, you can make the best of a bad situation by keeping your mind and your body as healthy as possible. This can include eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, cutting down on alcohol, and using relaxation techniques to reduce stress.

    What is best exercise for your brain? ›

    Brain-boosting exercises
    • Aerobic exercise. Regular aerobic exercise boosts blood flow to your brain, and also boosts the size of your hippocampus, the part of your brain that's involved in verbal memory and learning, Small says. ...
    • Weight training. ...
    • Yoga.
    2 Mar 2022

    Does walking delay dementia? ›

    New research has found that even 3,826 steps a day was associated with a reduced risk of dementia. Good news for those of us who often don't achieve a goal of 10,000 steps per day — walking 3,800 to 9,800 steps per day was also linked to a lower risk of dementia in a new study of adults in the United Kingdom.

    How do you make a dementia patient happy? ›

    Do something personal.
    1. Give the person a hand massage with lotion.
    2. Brush his or her hair.
    3. Give the person a manicure.
    4. Take photos of the person and make a collage.
    5. Encourage the person to talk more about subjects they enjoy.
    6. Make a family tree posterboard.

    What are 3 things that can be done to create a calm setting for an Alzheimer's patient? ›

    10 Methods to Calm Agitation and Aggression in Older Adults with Alzheimer's
    • Music. Music therapy helps seniors calm down and reflect on happier times. ...
    • Aromatherapy. ...
    • Touch. ...
    • Pet Therapy. ...
    • A Calm Approach. ...
    • Move to a Secure Memory Care Community. ...
    • Maintain Routines. ...
    • Provide Reassurances.
    28 Jun 2019

    What causes dementia patients to suddenly get worse? ›

    Rapidly progressive dementias or RPDs are extremely rare, but can cause dementia to worsen over weeks and months. RPDs can be caused by complex medical conditions such as Autoimmune conditions, cancer, and neurodegenerative diseases – i.e diseases that damage the body's nervous systems.

    What is the most common cause of death in dementia patients? ›

    One of the most common causes of death for people with dementia is pneumonia caused by an infection. A person in the later stages of dementia may have symptoms that suggest that they are close to death, but can sometimes live with these symptoms for many months.

    What is the most common behavior associated with dementia? ›

    Restlessness and fidgeting

    People with dementia often develop restless behaviours, such as pacing up and down, wandering out of the home and agitated fidgeting. This phase does not usually last for long. Try to: make sure the person has plenty to eat and drink.

    What do dementia patients think about? ›

    People with dementia think about the same things that any human thinks about — emotions, relationships, daily life, tasks to accomplish, and more. Receiving a life-changing diagnosis of dementia does not strip a person of their humanity and personhood.

    What foods exacerbate dementia? ›

    Studies have shown that people with high intakes of saturated and trans (which occur in hydrogenated vegetable oils) fats in their diet have a higher risk of developing dementia, while people with a diet that favours unsaturated, unhydrogenated fats have a lower risk.

    Is chocolate good for dementia? ›

    … is good for the Brain.

    Cross-sectional (observational) studies suggest that regular intake of dark chocolate (about 10 – 14 grams/day or about . 35 – . 5 oz) is associated with better cognitive performance in the elderly.

    Does ice cream help with dementia? ›

    Ice cream brings people with dementia to happier, warmer times when the treat was shared with friends and loved ones at special, joyous occa- sions. Ice cream has the power to immediately elicit soothing feelings at the very first taste of a single spoon-full.

    What is the number 1 food for your brain? ›

    1. Fatty fish. When people talk about brain foods, fatty fish is often at the top of the list. This type of fish includes salmon, trout, albacore tuna, herring, and sardines, all of which are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids ( 1 ).

    What is the most important vitamin for the brain? ›

    When it comes to brain health, focus on the three B's : vitamins B6, B12, and B9 (folate). “These three types of B vitamins are necessary for the brain's normal functioning,” says Dr. Agarwal, “and any deficiency in them may increase the risk of memory loss and other forms of cognitive decline.”

    Is coffee good for your brain? ›

    When consumed in moderation, coffee can be very good for your brain. In the short-term, it may improve mood, vigilance, learning, and reaction time. Long-term use may protect against brain conditions like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

    Are apples good for dementia? ›

    The results showed that patients consuming low levels of flavonols had up to twice the risk of developing dementia. Flavonols are found in tea, especially green tea, pears, apples, onions and cranberries. Those who had diets low in anthocyanins had a four-fold increase in the incidence of dementia.

    Does cheese help with dementia? ›

    Researchers found that red wine and cheese, when consumed responsibly, both seemed to be protective against deteriorating memory and other thinking skills. The study also found that eating lamb once a week offered some benefit. (Other red meats did not.)

    Are carrots good for dementia? ›

    Carrots are a great source of beta-carotene (which your body converts to vitamin A). Many studies have shown that people who consumed higher levels of vitamin A and other anti-oxidants over several years had substantially decreased levels of Alzheimer's disease.

    Can CBD oil help dementia and Alzheimer's? ›

    Currently there is no evidence to show that cannabis or cannabis oil (CBD oil) can stop, reverse or prevent dementia.

    What makes dementia progress quickly? ›

    other long-term health problems – dementia tends to progress more quickly if the person is living with other conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes or high blood pressure, particularly if these are not well-managed.

    Is there a pill to slow down dementia? ›

    Donepezil (also known as Aricept), rivastigmine (Exelon) and galantamine (Reminyl) are used to treat the symptoms of mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease. Donepezil is also used to treat more severe Alzheimer's disease.

    What reverses Alzheimer's? ›

    There's no way to reverse or cure Alzheimer's disease. However, scientists have made incredible progress in recent years. New Alzheimer's treatments may slow disease progression and reduce symptoms. They can help people stay independent and keep functional skills for longer than they'd be able to without treatment.

    Does watching TV help with dementia? ›

    For men and women with Alzheimer's disease or other forms of dementia, it can be especially beneficial. Watching movies and TV shows can help keep their brain active, which can stimulate positive memories, improve mood, and even increase socialization.

    How can you prevent Alzheimer's naturally? ›

    These include:
    1. stopping smoking.
    2. keeping alcohol to a minimum.
    3. eating a healthy, balanced diet, including at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables every day.
    4. exercising for at least 150 minutes every week by doing moderate-intensity aerobic activity (such as cycling or fast walking), or as much as you're able to.

    Do word puzzles help prevent dementia? ›

    Researchers determined that, out of the participants who eventually developed dementia, those who frequently did crossword puzzles demonstrated a much slower decline in memory. On average, crossword puzzles provided about a two and a half year delay in memory decline compared to those who did not do crossword puzzles.

    Is there a way to prevent dementia? ›

    There is no sure way to prevent dementia. Some risk factors cannot be controlled. But research suggests that you can manage other risk factors. There is no one specific method, treatment or substance that is proven to prevent dementia.

    What keeps you from getting dementia? ›

    Higher than normal levels of blood sugar, or glucose, can lead to diabetes and may increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, cognitive impairment, and dementia. Making healthy food choices, getting regular exercise, stopping smoking, and checking glucose levels can help manage blood sugar. Maintain a healthy weight.

    What are 3 causes of Alzheimer's? ›

    These include:
    • smoking.
    • obesity.
    • diabetes.
    • high blood pressure.
    • high cholesterol.

    How can you train your brain to prevent dementia? ›

    You can also:
    1. Learn something new, such as a second language or a musical instrument.
    2. Play board games with your kids or grandkids. ...
    3. Work on crossword, number, or other kinds of puzzles.
    4. Play online memory games or video games.
    5. Read, write, or sign up for local adult education classes.
    16 Oct 2020

    Does sugar make dementia worse? ›

    Well, the chilling answer is YES. According to research, an unhealthy diet makes a senior like you vulnerable to the cognitive impairment brought by dementia. In fact, a well-established study about diet implicates sugar as the major culprit in increasing your risk to develop the disease.

    What brings on early dementia? ›

    It is caused by genetic mutations (changes in genes) that run in families. Three genes have been found to have these rare mutations – PSEN1 (presenilin 1), PSEN2 (presenilin 2) and APP (amyloid precursor protein). There is a 50% risk of a parent passing on the familial Alzheimer's disease mutation to their children.

    What are triggers in dementia? ›

    Some of the more common triggers for dementia like a change in environment, having personal space invaded, or being emotionally overwhelmed may be easier to handle if you mentally practice your response before you react.

    What are 5 possible causes of dementia? ›

    Dementia is caused by damage to or changes in the brain.
    ...
    Common causes of dementia are:
    • Alzheimer's disease. ...
    • Vascular dementia. ...
    • Parkinson's disease. ...
    • Dementia with Lewy bodies. ...
    • Frontotemporal dementia. ...
    • Severe head injury.

    What 7 things trigger Alzheimer's? ›

    What Can Lead to Alzheimer's Disease?
    • Age. Your risk for Alzheimer's goes up as you get older. ...
    • Gender. Women get the disease more often than men.
    • Family history. People who have a parent or sibling with Alzheimer's are more likely to get it themselves.
    • Down syndrome. ...
    • Head injury. ...
    • Other factors.

    What is the #1 cause for Alzheimer's? ›

    Age. Increasing age is the greatest known risk factor for Alzheimer's disease.

    Who is most prone to Alzheimer's? ›

    The greatest known risk factor for Alzheimer's and other dementias is increasing age, but these disorders are not a normal part of aging. While age increases risk, it is not a direct cause of Alzheimer's. Most individuals with the disease are 65 and older. After age 65, the risk of Alzheimer's doubles every five years.

    What is the best exercise for your brain? ›

    Brain-boosting exercises
    • Aerobic exercise. Regular aerobic exercise boosts blood flow to your brain, and also boosts the size of your hippocampus, the part of your brain that's involved in verbal memory and learning, Small says. ...
    • Weight training. ...
    • Yoga.
    2 Mar 2022

    What is the best exercise to prevent dementia? ›

    After controlling for age, education and gender, the researchers found that participants who exercised regularly — defined as engaging in activities such as walking, running, swimming, dancing, participating in sports or working out at the gym — had a 17 percent lower risk of developing dementia compared with those who ...

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