By Gemma Hurditch for CNM.
Dementia is defined as a significant loss of intellectual abilities, often memory loss, to the extent where it interferes with social or occupational function.
Dementia is NOT a normal part of the ageing process. Given that there is currently no medical cure for the condition, is there anything we could do to try to help ourselves avoid it?
The causes of Alzheimer’s disease are poorly understood. Dietary and lifestyle factors, heavy metal toxicity, genetic variations, cardiovascular health and head trauma are all believed to play a role.
Vascular dementia risk is increased by all cardiovascular risks; high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and smoking etc. Diet and lifestyle is a major part of the equation.
Natural ways to address risk factors
- Ditch processed foods for more vegetables and fruits, to normalise blood pressure and increase vitamins and minerals.
- Look up the details of a low glycaemic load diet, designed to balance blood sugar and promote a healthy weight.
- Choose organic produce wherever possible to reduce chemical exposure and maximise healthful plant phytonutrients.
- Minimise red meat intake and aim for only grass fed, organic cuts.
- Eat oily fish 3 x per week; small mackerel, herring, anchovies. Larger fish may be too polluted with mercury.
- Consume turmeric to help reduce inflammation. Take half a teaspoon of the dried spice with some cracked black pepper to enhance absorption.
- Reduce inflammatory foods like sugar, dairy and processed grains. Replace with additional green leafy vegetables, fruit and nut smoothies, quinoa and brown rice.
- Exercise five days a week for 40 minutes, a brisk walk is good.
- Sleep is important. Ensure good rest, away from screens and devices.
- Maintain hobbies and social interaction; learning new things and keeping the brain active is protective and can compensate for loss of function in other areas.
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