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Lifestyle Choices that Delay Alzheimer's Disease

 Lifestyle Choices that Delay AlzheimerÔÇÖs Disease


Alzheimer’s has been known as the silent serial killer of the brain’s memory. The effects of Alzheimer’s disease can be delayed by interacting with others and doing complex thinking. People who have a lifestyle that is mentally stimulating tend to be more protected from the decline of cognition that is related to the typical diet of the Western World. According to one study conducted in Baycrest Health Sciences in Toronto by Matthew Parrott.


Cognition Decline & Diet

There is a relationship between cognitive decline and your diet. The study was done over three years and followed 351 senior adults who lived independently. A diet of processed red meat, potatoes and white bread as well as sweets and pre-packed food was related with the decline of cognition. On the other end of the spectrum, individuals that had more social engagement and stimulating work as well as those that had a higher level of education maintained a greater degree of cognitive function.


Research also shows that in Alzheimer’s, the loss of memory tends to show in five separate symptom categories. These include perception, social-appropriateness, impulse control, mood and apathy.


Of course, a good diet is something that everyone needs to keep in mind. When it comes to dementia risks, however, healthy choices will enable you to better accommodate some of the brain damage that comes with unhealthy diets.


Interaction Helps!

In another study, it showed that those that worked with people rather than physical things had the highest cognitive function. This was true for healthy people that had Alzheimer’s evident in the brain. This study, conducted in the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center and the Alzheimer’s Institute looked at brain scans for white matter and spots of 284 senior citizens.


This new information suggests that complex work environments and lifestyles that are more stimulating are related to better cognition in later life.


Which Jobs Are Better?

The jobs considered most helpful to cognition included being a doctor, engineer, social worker, teacher and lawyer. The ones that offered the least amount of protection include machine operator, grocery shelf stocker, cashier and laborer.


Different Symptoms for Early Alzheimer’s

Another study has described a new condition called Mild Behavior Impairment or MBI and its symptoms. People assume that the first symptom of Alzheimer’s is memory loss. However, other researchers suggest otherwise. Dr. Zahinoor Ismail, Hotchkiss Brain Institute neuropsychiatry specialist at the University of Calgary is one of them.


In Alzheimer’s they found 5 categories of symptoms that come before Alzheimer’s memory loss. These include perception, social appropriateness, impulse control, mood and apathy. Symptoms specifically include substance abuse, hoarding, stubbornness, frustration, argumentativeness, aggression, panic episodes, disorientation and sadness.


There are studies that show that if you are an older or even middle-aged adult and have a new onset of any of these symptoms of neuropsychiatry, you have more of a likelihood of declining and going into dementia or mild cognitive impairment.



In Toronto, another study called the ACTIVE Study revealed the effects of training the brain three different ways in older adults. The acronym ACTIVE stands for Advanced Cognition Training for Independent and Vital Elderly. In the span of a decade, 2,802 older adults who were cognitively healthy with 73.4 being the average age were divided into 4 groups. One group was not trained. Another group went through a sharper reasoning skills course in the classroom.


Another group got a boosting memory strategy course in the classroom. The fourth group went through training with a computer to increase their ability to process visually.  The computer-trained group decreased their decline of cognition over a decade by as much as thirty-three percent.

In order to delay the potential killer of the brain’s memory it is proven that one must be actively engaging the brain with stimulating tasks, and maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating healthy foods and exercising regularly. Switching jobs to a more stimulating one may be the right choice for someone seeking a challenge and may be the right brain food your brain has craving.

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