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Mind

5 ways to lower your risk of dementia

There’s no cure for dementia just yet, but there are plenty of ways to lower your risk.

By Erin Fisher
There are now cures, vaccines and medications for many debilitating health conditions.
Unfortunately, dementia isn't yet one of them.
Until there is, the best way to protect yourself from experiencing a decline in memory and cognitive function is to implement healthy lifestyle changes as early as possible.

1. Try a mediterranean diet

What you eat has an impact on the health of your heart and blood vessels, and the healthier these systems are, the better the blood flow will be to your brain.
Current evidence suggests that following a Mediterranean diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fish, nuts and seeds, with small amounts of meat and dairy, is the best way to protect the brain and memory.
Adopting a Mediterranean diet could help protect the brain and memory. (Image: Ben Dearnley / bauersyndication.com.au)

2. Get your cardio in

Don't skip cardio!
There is solid evidence that doing aerobic exercise like walking, swimming, jogging or cycling is the best type of movement for looking after your memory, as it boosts the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain.

3. Keep your mind sharp

Give your brain its own workout by doing puzzles, games, learning something new, or memorising lists to keep your neural networks firing and your mind sharp.

4. Remain socially engaged

If you don't want to lose your marbles, then don't lose touch with your friends.
There is increasing evidence that people who are more socially engaged perform better in memory tests.
Make time to phone friends, meet up regularly, and enjoy any company you have at home.

5. Focus on your overall health

Living an all-round healthy life – not smoking, drinking in moderation, and keeping blood pressure in check – will help lower your risk of dementia.

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