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Can Exercise Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease?

The statistics are scary when it comes to Alzheimer’s disease. Experts suggest that the number of cases could triple in the next 30-40 years, with more than 100 million people being affected. If you want to lower your risk, it is important that you learn valuable tips that can help you stay healthier longer.

Researchers believe that many of the people affected by Alzheimer’s have a predisposed genetic risk, but in nearly a third of the cases diagnosed, there is no genetic component—but there is a correlation between diabetes, obesity, smoking, and lack of physical activity. In the United States and throughout Europe, the lack of adequate physical activity may be the most significant risk factor. This is thought to be related to the lower blood flow and lack of oxygen to the brain when you don’t exercise.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, exercise helps the brain work more efficiently, and this helps to preserve cognitive function and slow decline. It also helps you to lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and obesity, which are all risk factors.

All you need to help improve your odds is 10 minutes of exercise per day. That’s not very much to try and sneak in, even if you are very busy. A recent study that was published in the Journal of International Neuropsychological Society found that exercise helps to keep the part of your brain that is affected by Alzheimer’s stronger and functioning better. Scientists at the University of Maryland Public Health Department examined older adults and their exercise habits. They determined that those who exercised had thicker cortex regions, which helped protect the brain from cognitive decline.

The latest advice from the Journal of Alzheimer’s Research recommends getting about 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise. Many adults can see results in only 12 weeks. So, get out and get moving, and reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer’s while you get healthier in many ways!