By Alane Palmer, ND, CNC, and Annah Gillette
Experts say that one-third of the world’s dementia cases could be prevented by managing lifestyle factors such as hearing loss, hypertension, and depression.
This remarkable fact was part of a report by the first Lancet Commission on Dementia Prevention and Care that was presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2017 and published in The Lancet. The report also highlighted the beneficial effects of nonpharmacologic interventions such as social contact and exercise for people with dementia.The commission’s report identified nine risk factors in early, mid- and late life that increases the likelihood of developing dementia. About 35 percent of dementia — one in three cases — is attributable to these risk factors, the report said.
By increasing education in early life and addressing hearing loss, hypertension and obesity in midlife, the incidence of dementia could be reduced by as much as 20 percent, combined.
In late life, stopping smoking, treating depression, increasing physical activity, increasing social contact and managing diabetes could reduce the incidence of dementia by another 15 percent.
“The potential magnitude of the impact on dementia of reducing these risk factors is larger than we could ever imagine the effect that current, experimental medications could have,” Schneider said. “Mitigating risk factors provides us a powerful way to reduce the global burden of dementia.”
Keep your mind active. Mentally stimulating activities, such as reading, solving puzzles and playing word games, and memory training might delay the onset of dementia and decrease its effects.
Be physically and socially active. Physical activity and social interaction might delay the onset of dementia and reduce its symptoms. Move more and aim for 150 minutes of exercise a week.
Quit smoking. Some studies have shown smoking in middle age and beyond may increase your risk of dementia and blood vessel (vascular) conditions. Quitting smoking might reduce your risk and will improve your health.
Get enough vitamin D. Research suggests that people with low levels of vitamin D in their blood are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. You can get vitamin D through certain foods, supplements and sun exposure.
More study is needed before an increase in vitamin D intake is recommended for preventing dementia, but it’s a good idea to make sure you get adequate vitamin D.
Lower your blood pressure. High blood pressure might lead to a higher risk of some types of dementia. More research is needed to determine whether treating high blood pressure may reduce the possibility of dementia.
Maintain a healthy diet. Eating a healthy diet is important for many reasons, but a diet — rich in fruits, vegetables, and omega-3 fatty acids, commonly found in certain fish and nuts — might promote health and lower your risk of developing dementia.
Comprehensive blood testing can give you a look at your inflammatory levels which may be leading to dementia and other health challenges. This all inclusive test will include results on insulin, c reactive protein, homocysteine, fibrinogen, hemoglobin A1C, high iron. Additionally the Western Blot test for Lyme which is the great imitator when it comes to signs of inflammation and dementia.
Examples: We have been working with a lady in her 60s suffering from dementia. The symptoms are real , yes she has it, but the symptoms were caused from a sluggish thyroid, low iron and high inflammation markers. And another client age 54 had 4 positive bands on a Lyme western blot test, once treated, the dementia symptoms improved drastically!
You do not have to live with symptoms, get tested., get a clearer direction and start feeling better soon!
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Medical disclaimer: Our test kits cannot be used to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. All test results are to be used as educational materials and as a guide to help support your overall health and wellness. Always discuss health concerns with your medical doctor.