brain health

Cognitive Benefits of Sleep

Everyone enjoys that feeling of waking up refreshed after a good night’s sleep. You might think that during this restful period, your brain and body have turned off or shut down to deliver this sensation of rejuvenation. But in actuality, your brain is quite actively performing many critical functions during sleep. It is for this reason that it is so important to get regular uninterrupted quality sleep so that your brain has a chance to perform these essential tasks during the night. Trash Remo...
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The Stages of Alzheimer’s

When an aging loved one starts getting forgetful, misplacing things or repeating questions, you might begin to wonder if this could be an indication of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. It is possible that these lapses are simply a normal part of aging or possibly signs of a mild cognitive impairment unrelated to Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. If these behaviors are a concern to you or your loved one, it is important to speak with your doctor in order to get an accurate diagnosis. Alzheimer’s ...
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Can Sleep Disorders Lead to Alzheimer’s?

Sleep problems are familiar to Alzheimer’s patients and those who care for them. The experience of sleep disorders is quite common for individuals with Alzheimer’s. What has not been entirely clear is which comes first: Alzheimer’s disease or the related sleep disorders. Experts have suspected that areas of the brain responsible for regulating sleep are damaged in individuals with Alzheimer’s, leading to poor quality sleep. Now, brain scientists at Oregon Health & Science University suggest...
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High Blood Sugar Levels May Increase Alzheimer’s Risk

It is well known that having too much sugar in the blood for long periods can lead to hyperglycemia which can contribute to increased risks of organ damage, heart attack and stroke, vision problems, and diabetes complications. Scientists have also known that people with diabetes are at greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease but the connection between the two remained unclear. Researchers have now discovered that the molecular reaction triggered by excess glucose damages a specific enzym...
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Early Onset Alzheimer’s Disease

We typically view Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia as a condition affecting older people. This is generally true. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, of the over 5 million people in the United States affected by Alzheimer’s disease, about 95% are 65 years and older. But this means that nearly 5% of people with Alzheimer’s are diagnosed at a younger age, in their 50s, 40s and, sometimes, even in their 30s. This is known as younger- or early-onset Alzheimer’s disease and it a...
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Pleasant Mealtimes Can Help Alzheimer’s Care

People with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia often experience challenges with healthy eating and drinking. Problems may initially arise from forgetfulness about mealtimes, but difficulties increase as the disease progresses. Patients can experience appetite loss due to declining interest in food or effects from medications. They may have increasing difficulty using utensils, find food less appealing, feel overwhelmed by too many food choices, or have trouble chewing or swallowin...
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How the MIND Diet Feeds the Brain

You may already be aware that your lifestyle and dietary choices can help contribute to good health and better quality of life as you age. But did you know that eating or avoiding certain foods can lead to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s by a whopping 53%? A recent study from Rush University demonstrated that subjects who stuck to a specific food plan – the MIND diet – experienced up to a 53% reduced risk of Alzheimer’s, while people who followed the diet only part of the time still lowered their...
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Coping with Behavioral Changes in Alzheimer’s Patients

Most of us associate Alzheimer’s disease with the well-known and tragic symptoms of forgetfulness, mental confusion and memory loss. Certainly, early signs of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia can include memory impairment, confusion, social withdrawal, disorientation and difficulty with words and communicating. Alzheimer’s disease causes brain cells to die which results in impaired memory and cognitive functioning. This loss of brain functioning can also lead to behavioral changes. If yo...
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Alzheimer’s Experts Shift Focus from Research to Prevention

Everyone is hoping for the miracle cure that can stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Significant research resources are aimed at finding this miracle cure to help the estimated 16 million people expected to become afflicted with Alzheimer’s by 2050. But Alzheimer’s disease is not an inevitability for all older people, even those considered to be at high risk. While some risk factors cannot be reversed, such as aging or having a family history of Alzheimer’s, other factor...
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A Three-Step Mantra for Living with Alzheimer’s

In this inspirational video from the Alzheimer Society of Ireland, Ronan Smith frankly discusses his personal experience with Alzheimer’s disease, first through caring for his father who was diagnosed in the 1980s, then as a patient when he himself was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2014. Smith, a former actor and now an outspoken advocate for Alzheimer’s patients and caregivers, describes the challenges his family faced when caring for his father in the 1980s. There were far fewer resources fo...
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