We all know that exercise helps with things like weight loss, giving us a boost of energy, and even relieving our stress. However, what many people didn’t know until recently is that it can also help ward off Alzheimer’s Disease. This is good news considering how this tragic illness can rob a person and their family of years of happiness as it slowly destroys the mind and personality of the one who’s been afflicted by it. While there isn’t a cure for this disease yet, medication is available to help treat its symptoms and delay its progression, but they only work when the disease is caught early enough.
What Research is Finding
A recent study was conducted in which it was discovered that moderate exercise can help prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. Exercise was shown to help slow memory decline, which is one of the disease’s early symptoms. This finding was based on over 1,700 adults, 65-years-old and older who didn’t have dementia when the study first began. Participants who exercised at least three times each week were about a third less likely to develop dementia throughout the 6 years this study covered.
In this study the researchers randomly assigned older adults who showed an increased likelihood of developing dementia to either participate in an exercise program lasting 24 weeks or to an educational program. Those who were assigned to the exercise program were encouraged to spend 50 minutes, three times a week, exercising. Walking was the most frequently recommended form of exercise here.
All participants had their cognitive function evaluated for a period of 18 months. This was done using a standard cognition test that’s commonly used with patients who have Alzheimer’s Disease. When researchers reviewed the results, they discovered that members of the exercise group had better scores, especially when it came to the impact this exercise had on their memory. These same people also did better on a dementia rating scale. While it’s important to understand that these were small gains, the amount of activity was also small. It’s also important to note that if doctors could delay dementia’s onset by a single year, they’d have 9.2 million cases of Alzheimer’s Disease throughout the world today.
To stay mentally fit you must stay physically fit. In the past we understood that this was true for the heart but now we understand exercise’s importance for the brain too. This is because cardiovascular disease’s risk factors are the same for Alzheimer’s Disease as well. However, it’s important to understand this isn’t the only lifestyle change that’ll help seniors here.
Staying active in body in mind will help you remain sharp. Getting an appointment to have your hearing tested will also aid in this process. Recent studies by Johns Hopkins University has shown that people who have a mild, moderate to severe hearing loss are 2 to 5 times more likely to develop dementia than those with normal hearing. For your free hearing evaluation, you should contact Countryside Hearing Aid Services. While they can’t help you stop the aging process, they can make sure you don’t miss out on a moment of your life and what’s happening around you so give them a call today.
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