As months and years go by, your skin may begin to set you thinking about it. Examine your neck and hands closely for signs of deterioration. But you can’t examine your brain; what if it is aging, too?
Of course, your brain also requires your attention, and yes, it loses its potency with the passing of time. Some people who are predisposed for dementia or maybe Alzheimer’s Disease it might lead to grave results. Other things can join in to aggravate the situation – for instance, going without sufficient sleep for a long time or laboring under chronic stress.
Therefore it is worth your while to sit down and ponder over your everyday life. Do you eat healthy? Do you have regular workouts? Do you strain your brain often? If not, your mental prowess may start to fade sooner than it has to. So, there are things you can do to prevent it happening.
Alzheimer’s disease and dementia can be an unpleasant surprise when you have reached the mellow age, and partially their advent depends on your daily decisions of taking or skipping a jog, snacking at odd hours or letting it pass. These behaviors shape the development of conditions you would want to avoid.
You neglect the health of your mind to a worrying degree
As the National Institute on Aging, or NIA, reports, the brain cannot escape aging – cognitive abilities slow down, neurons begin to communicate faultily, even some areas may shrink, especially if the blood flow to the brain decreases. Besides, there is harm done by possible inflammations.
Yet the process can be speeded up by unhealthy everyday habits (the factor that could be controlled by you!). Good ways to ensure your brain functioning happily for as long as it is humanly possible, you need to be physically active, sleep long enough, mind your blood pressure, not to smoke too much – actually, whatever is conducive to good health adds power to the brain as well. Other brain-healthy habits include social activity, getting by without alcohol overdoses, and battling depression successfully.
Depriving yourself of sleep
Let’s consider the point of how long you sleep. If you don’t mean to undermine your health and impair your brain functions, you should get seven hours‘ shuteye and more. While you are out of circulation, your body is busy checking metabolism, temperature, and its other functions important for staying well. By cutting down on sleep time you place yourself (and your brain) in a disadvantageous position.
Not doing good for your hearing ability
As emerges from a research conducted in 2011 by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, loss of hearing and dementia can be linked. It appears that older people with hearing problems had a much higher risk of developing dementia. The phenomenon may be related to the additional strain as the brain attempts to make out voices and noises; also, worse hearing can result in social isolation (which is a recognized dementia risk factor). Anyway, volunteer individuals with mild hearing disability have twice the usual risk of having dementia later on; a moderate disability means three times the risk, and a severe case can up the risk by five times.
Drinking more than moderately
A glass or two of good wine before the evening meal is all right, but if you go for more, start considering your brain. As soon as you reach the point of about five glasses within a couple of hours, the brain begins to feel it. What can be said then about an evening-long binge? Such behaviors may lead to the diminishing of gray matter on the surface, the tissue rich in nerve cells; then, a poorer density of white matter which contains nerve fibers responsible for transmitting signals; memory retention and learning also get afflicted.
Your heart labors under unfavorable condition
The heart pumps blood into the brain, so if there’s something wrong with the heart, your brain will start getting less blood which will cause early aging. A recent study in JAMA Neurology confirmed this connection, showing that mature persons with diabetes, hypertension, or other high vascular risk factors tend to get afflicted with dementia with advancing age.
The idea of going to the gym doesn’t attract you
You can find plenty of evidence to the effect that old-age brain downturn occurs much faster if there is no habit of regular visits to the gym acquired in about mid-life or earlier. To make your life more physically active is beneficial in all periods of life, but it is even more momentous to get busy in late thirties or thereabouts to ensure maximum health profit.
You no longer want to learn anything new
The fact is individuals with a high intelligence level run a significantly lower risk of devloping dementia. Education level really has a lot to do with the onset of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease as the person grows old, because when learning the brain builds new connections and gets stronger, putting off deteriorating processes.
You are a heavy smoker
Those who don’t want to ever come in touch with Alzheimer’s disease would do well to forget that cigarettes exist. Now some researchers are affiliated with tobacco industry, and an analysis conducted by scientists at the University of California in 2010 revealed that their studies rate the risk factor lower – while independent research shows that Alzheimer’s disease risk is twice as great for smokers.
Your relationships and family ties have a habit of dissolving in the air
There are many things that help bring down stress level – apart from workouts and shopping, it’s your mind being active as you are socializing with your friends and acquaintances. Relieving stress and taking you onto another plane, quality socializing can settle issues that may be tormenting to your brain.
You rely on pills heavily
That’s not quite what you thought at first. Illegal pills won’t do you any good, sure, but things like minerals and vitamins can also aggravate the aging process. It’s true that some of them are prescribed to help fight age-caused diseases, yet if you go overboard with them, practically all vitamins and supplements could make you sick and have impact on your brain.
For instance, vitamin D, even if taken in substantial amount, keeps a number of diseases at bay, but once you have had an overdose, it increases your risk of succumbing to heart diseases. Supplements taken with abandon could up the risk of cancer-related problems. So your helpful pills need care.
You neglect relaxation
Meditation can be a good answer to feeling stressed and exhausted. While you meditate, you throw off mundane experience – and, as scientsits have recently established, you also take time off the aging of your brain. With the help of update medical equipment, Harvard scientists found proof that meditation effects important changes in the brain and therefore affect abilities related to generating emotions, learn and commit information to memory.
Your eating habits lead you to unhealthy food
What you eat is immediately registered in your brain. If you wish to mind your brain, there is the diet called MIND that works wonders in terms of trying to avoid Alzheimer’s disease. Those who observe the diet strictly can expect a 53-per cent reduction in risk, whereas those who follow it in moderation are in for a 35-percent one. The diet advocates three and more salads per day followed by another vegetable. Besides, it promulgates foods that are especially healthy for the brain, namely leafy vegetables and all sorts of vegetables, beans, various berries, fish, poultry, nuts, fats contained in olive oil, and even a judicious dose of wine. Take a special note of blueberries – they are very potent and nourishing for the brain.
You have a busy highway near your home
A highway invariably spells pollution, and it is irrefutably bad for the brain. As the Lancet journal reports, those residing in the area stretching for about 50 metres of traffic-heavy highways run the risk of developing dementia higher by 7% in comparison with people whose houses stand away from roadways farther than 300 metres.