NYC Healthcare News



Spouses face hurdles when caring for themselves, ill loved ones

September 17, 2015

The medical risks include cardiovascular factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes or a tendency toward diabetes. "All of these increase risk for Alzheimer's disease, and all of those things can be controlled medically," said Kosik. "We already knew these things were bad for you; the new information is that all of those things are risks for Alzheimer's disease too."

The following are ways to reduce the risk of getting Alzheimer's disease, according to the authors:

Exercise. Exercise keeps every organ in the body healthy, including the brain.

Certain diets. The Mediterranean diet is the one that has shown documented results.Reducing stress. Chronic stress -- such as divorce, losing a home, or losing a job -- is not good for the brain. Consulting counselors, coaches, social workers, and spiritual guides can help with recovery.

Keep your brain active. Present your brain with cognitive challenges. To reduce risk there are computer programs with graded series of cognitive challenges that keep the brain active.

Keep up a social life. Don't get isolated. Many studies have shown that successful aging -- people who reach their 90's and are still healthy -- are statistically more likely to be people who have friends.

Michael S. Gazzaniga, director of UCSB's Sage Center for the Study of Mind, commented on the book. "If you think getting old is simply about losing neurons, read this book," he said. "Many things change and the good news is that by realizing the complexities of aging, there are many ways to make life pleasant and rewarding. Ken Kosik and Ellen Clegg capture this idea with brilliance and verve."

Source: University of California - Santa Barbara