Caregiver's Corner

328 West Conan Street
Ely, Minnesota 55731


5 Tips to Help Prevent Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer's can start formulating in your brain as early as your 30s. Follow these tips to change your lifestyle for better brain health.

Most people think of Alzheimer's as an old person's disease, but doctors say it can actually start formulating in your brain as early as your 30s. While that might be a scary thought, there are a few lifestyle changes you can make now that experts believe could impact your risk of developing the disease.

"One out of three cases of Alzheimer's may be preventable if that person does everything right," explained Dr. Richard Isaacson, director of the Alzheimer's Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell & New York-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City.

1. Exercise regularly, at a high intensity.

Exercise can protect against Alzheimer's because it not only increases blood flow to the brain, but it loosens up that amyloid plaque, the bad sticky stuff that gets caught up and gunked up in the brain of a person with Alzheimer's disease.

Any exercise helps, but experts recommend getting at least three hours of rigorous activity a week. Ideally, that would be two cardio workouts and one strength-training session.

2. Get at least 7.5 hours of quality sleep every night.

When you sleep, the brain can clean out the damaging amyloid plaques.

Turn off the electronics, no bright lights from the screens, no texting, no emails. Have a quiet, dark room. And clear your mind.

3. Eat right and eat less.

Avoid sugar and processed foods, and consider switching to a Mediterranean diet. The brain shrinks as you age, but a study published in The Journal of Neurology found people in their mid-70s who consumed a Mediterranean diet (more fruits, veggies, olive oil, and less meat and cheese) lost less brain mass than people who ate a diet more typical of their country. A bigger brain later in life is beneficial and could protect from diseases like Alzheimer's.

Experts say the best brain diet is comprised of foods like leafy greens, whole fruits and vegetables. While you shouldn't obsess over counting calories, try to aim for 2,100 calories a day.

4. Get your blood checked every year.

Having high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes is a way towards Alzheimer's disease ... Know your blood pressure, know your fasting blood sugar, know what your cholesterol is.

5. Keep your brain challenged.

Your brain wants to be used and wants to learn something new every day.  Participate in lectures, community ed, read books…even visiting web sites and using apps that feature brain exercises have been linked to dramatically lower rates of dementia in seniors.

Northwoods Partners is so grateful for our partner...
You matter

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to