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These days aging doesn't conjure soft, glowing images of riding peacefully into the golden years; instead, it signals the opening of a floodgate of chronic illnesses and bodily worries that keep our retirement funds under attack and brains racked with worry. One of the scariest realities are the diseases responsible for taking away our memories and, sanity in some cases.
Alzheimer's Disease and other forms of dementia are devastating diseases that rob the memories and lives of those they infect. Family members and loved ones are forced to watch as a whole lifetime of knowledge and experiences are lost and never to be discovered. This begs the question: What on Earth can I do to keep my own brain alive and kickin'?!
It may surprise you to learn that research indicates a healthy, physically active lifestyle can greatly reduce the chances of getting a memory-related disease. The ideal physical routine to adhere to is working out three times per week, for about 20 minutes per session, to get your heart rate up and blood flowing. When your blood starts flowing faster, the brain is bathed in oxygen, helping to restore and nourish the nerves and strengthen connections.
It's understandable if you don't have three days each week to take time out for exercise, life is hectic and time is in short supply. Even exercising just one day per week is shown to make a noticeable difference in improving memory health.
And as the title suggests, keeping a healthy mouth can help keep your brain healthy as well. The plaque build up on your teeth can cause an immune reaction that attacks your arteries, thereby robbing your brain of vital nutrients, which can lead to memory-related problems or even disease.
Along with physical activity, keeping an active, challenged brain will greatly help to combat losing it along with your memory in old age. Brain teasers are excellent mental exercising tools, and are most effective when paired with physical exercise. So next time you go to the gym, jump on the stationary bike with a crossword puzzle, or play an educational podcast while running. Or if you like keeping your gym time strictly physical, do the crossword immediately after, so your body is still in exercise mode.
It's never too late to start preparing for the years to come. Keep your brain matter and memories intact by keeping yourself healthy in general. No slacking, time if of the essence!!
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