Nobody wants to have Dementia, just like no one smiles at a Cancer diagnosis or throws a party when they hear they’ve developed heart disease. Like many things in life, whether we develop a life-changing illness or not is a lottery and we can’t predict the future. However, when it comes to Dementia there are a few things you can do to lower your chances because, trust us, this is one draw you really don’t want to ‘win’.
Spice Is Nice:
Research has shown that eating spicier foods like Indian or Thai curries and adding more chilli or cumin to meals can help boost your memory. One study revealed participants remembered more facts, and figures after consuming cur cumin, the spice responsible for the vivid yellow / orange shade of many curries.
Oily fish is often called ‘brain food’ as it contains Omega-3, a fatty acid that benefits the body in a number of ways. Sardines, salmon and mackerel are all excellent choices as they contain lots of Omega-3, something your body can’t make itself so you either have to take supplements or eat plenty of fish, nuts and seeds.
Omega-3 also improves your hair, nails and skin- giving you that lovely healthy glow while vegans, and vegetarians can get their daily dose from wild rice, winter squash, cabbages and fruit like raspberries, blueberries and blackberries. Studies have shown that consuming Omega-3 lowers feelings of depression, anxiety and sadness as well as reducing your risk of heart disease and dementia of course.
Get Out There!
Netflix should pop an ‘exercise break’ line of code into their platform so after you’ve watched five episodes you have to be active for an hour before you can watch more! No matter how young, or old you are exercise is vital for staying healthy, both physically and mentally. You want to be engaging in some form of activity be it swimming, running, walking or yoga at least three times a week to keep your heart healthy and your body strong.
Believe it or not, papers don’t print the daily crossword for the fun of seeing little black and white squares! Even if you’ve never done one before you may find you enjoy filling it in, because there’s nothing more satisfying than a completed crossword. If you’re new to crossword puzzles pick an easy one and away you go. Why crosswords? It’s all about keeping your brain active and reinforcing those mental muscles for the years ahead. Studies show that regular ‘puzzlers’ have brains ten years younger than their actual age!
Hello My Friend
Loneliness isn’t the same as choosing to be alone and we touch on this complex issue here. Social isolation has been linked to dementia so it’s crucial that we all see as many people as possible. Spend time chatting to friends on the phone, invite the family round to dinner, join a new club or sign up to a befriending scheme. Whatever you – do it together.
Sing, Sing, Sing
Yes, even singing helps fight Dementia! Why? because the brain processes sound differently to words. University of Virginia researchers have confirmed that singing increases the cognitive ability of those with moderate to severe Alzheimer’s.
Fit Not Fat
We could write an entirely separate blog post on this subject but suffice to say obesity isn’t a good look on anyone, even those ‘plus-size’ bloggers who claim being a size 28 is healthy. There’s a difference between being curvy and dangerously overweight, as the latter can cause high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and yes increase your chances of developing dementia.
Frankie Says Relax
Chronic stress isn’t just physically exhausting it can play havoc with our mental state and unchecked can lead to depression, anxiety and even insomnia. We know life is busy, but it’s important that you take a break for yourself every now and then. Whether it’s reading, listening to music, playing sports or dancing as long as you’re regularly relaxing it’s all good. No one knows for sure if prolonged stress can bring on Dementia but why take the risk?