Healthy Living for Your Brain and Body: Tips from the Latest Research

By RetireMEDiQ

RetireMEDiQ recently hosted a special event for our clients. The event, titled Healthy Living for Your Brain & Body, included sessions at our Cincinnati and Dayton offices. The sessions were held in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association of Greater Cincinnati and Miami Valley Chapters, respectively. We want to thank those who attended! We hope you found the presentation beneficial. For those of you who were not able to make it, you can watch the full video from the event on Facebook. Keep reading for a recap of some of the key points shared by our speakers!

At RetireMEDiQ, we value our clients’ health and wellbeing. Research has shown that much can be done to promote health and cognitive functioning as we age, which is why joining with the Alzheimer’s Association to host the event was especially meaningful to us. Our goal is to provide clients with the resources they need to live healthy, fulfilling lives.

The sessions provided attendees with practical advice on prioritizing one’s health in daily life. During the sessions, strategies for aging well were discussed. Specifically, the areas of physical health and exercise, diet and nutrition, cognitive activity and social engagement were explored. One of the key takeaways from this event is to begin by working toward one of these lifestyle choices until it’s a habit and eventually combine them to achieve maximum benefits.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease 

  • Alzheimer’s is a physical disease in the brain, which causes dementia, or anything affecting your cognitive ability.
  • Dementia is caused by many different diseases and conditions and is not part of normal aging.
  • Known risks for Alzheimer’s include age, genetics, head injury, cardiovascular factors and fewer years of formal education.
  • The reason we’re seeing more cases of Alzheimer’s is that people are living longer.

 What We Know About Physical Health and Exercise

  • Cardiovascular activity may reduce your risk of cognitive decline and helps grow new brain cells.
  • Regular and vigorous exercise leads to increased blood flow.
  • Physical activity can help with regulating blood sugar.
  • Sleep is vital – your brain recharges during this time.

What to Do to Improve Your Physical Health and Exercise

  • Do something you enjoy
  • Get your heart rate up
  • Ask friends to join you
  • Check with your doctor before you start
  • Stop smoking
  • Avoid excess alcohol
  • Get adequate sleep
  • Take preventive measures to avoid head injury
  • Manage stress
  • Treat depression
  • Visit your doctor regularly

We will be participating in the Greater Cincinnati, Dayton, and Butler, Warren and Clinton Counties Walks to End Alzheimer’s and would be honored if you would consider attending the walks with us or donating! This is a great opportunity to continue your physical health and exercise goals!

 What We Know About Diet and Nutrition

  • What’s good for the heart is also good for the brain.
  • Nutritious food is fuel for the brain.

Nutrition Tips to Improve Your Diet

What to Include in Your Diet

  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Nuts, beans and whole grains
  • Lean meats, fish and poultry
  • Vegetable oils

What to Avoid

  • Saturated/trans fats
  • Processed foods
  • Solid fat, sugar and salt
  • Deep-fried foods
  • Unhealthy fast foods

What We Know About Cognitive Activity

  • Keeping your mind active forms new connections among brain cells.
  • Cognitive activity encourages blood flow to the brain.
  • Engaging in formal education will keep your brain healthy and provide protection against developing dementia.
  • Although Alzheimer’s disease cannot be reversed, for those with dementia, keeping the brain engaged can help prolong cognitive functioning.
  • Social engagement is important for cognitive health.

What to Do to Improve Your Cognitive Activity

  • Read books and articles that engage and inspire you
  • Complete puzzles and play games that are challenging to you
  • Learn new skills or hobbies
  • Engage in ongoing learning
  • Music and singing can be helpful to engage those with Alzheimer’s

What We Know About Social Engagement

  • Social engagement is associated with living longer and developing fewer disabilities.
  • Staying engaged with the community provides an opportunity to maintain your skills.
  • Remaining both socially and mentally active may support brain health and possibly delay the onset of dementia.

What to Do to Remain Socially Engaged

  • Visit with friends and family
  • Engage with others
  • Stay involved in the community
  • Volunteer outside the home
  • Join a group or club

You can learn more about Alzheimer’s on the Alzheimer’s Association’s website. Learn about the services and programs offered near you, such as support groups and educational workshops here. RetireMEDiQ is excited to fight to #ENDALZ with you!

If you have questions about the topics discussed in this post, leave a comment below and we will respond!

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