cognitive impairment

  1. Weight training curbs cognitive impairment

    Pump up your brain with this twice-a-week trick

    We all get those "brain burps."

    Most of the time, they're nothing to worry about. We all lose our keys now and then. Everybody walks out of the grocery store without the one thing that they went in for in the first place.

    You've got to have a sense of humor about these little lapses. We're only human, after all.

    But if you think your memory may be starting to really slide... if those "senior moments" are becoming more the rule than the exception... don't ignore it.

    There may be no "cure" for these cognitive impairments that could be an early indicator of dementia or even Alzheimer's, but that doesn't mean there's nothing you can do to help.

    And, according to a new study, there's one easy way to keep yourself of strong mind AND body.

    In a recent randomized trial conducted by University of Sydney, older adults who did some weight training just two or three times a week showed significant improvement in cognitive function.

    Not only did they gain muscle strength and aerobic capacity (a measure of how efficiently your body uses oxygen during exercise), but they also had sharper minds.

    It was as though their brains got stronger as they increased the strength of their bodies!

    And all it took was keeping that light activity up for just six months for the benefits to last a year AFTER the study ended.

    I should note that the folks in the study had already been diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment (MCI)... so any improvement in their cognitive strength was a big deal.

    But even if you haven't shown any signs of MCI yourself, there's no reason not to work a little strength training into your routine. File this under: Why not?

    It makes a lot of sense that that pumping iron can beef up your brain, considering what we already know about exercise and brain health.

    The connection between regular physical activity and a reduced risk of Alzheimer's is well established. In one study that I recently shared with you, brisk walking literally made people's brains THICKER!

    Now, don't let the idea of "weight training" scare you off. We're not talking about trying to become a bodybuilder here.

    In fact, participants in the study lifted weights at just 80 percent of their individual strength capacity.

    If you've ever done physical therapy, you may have had your strength capacity tested -- but most of us don't really know our limits until we've surpassed them and ended up in pain.

    So, start out small to avoid injury. Pretty much any sporting goods store sells little hand weights that weigh as little as a pound. You can gradually work your way up from there.

    I always try to encourage my older patients to take advantage of the group fitness activities at their local senior center, if they live near one. Joining a group keeps you accountable and helps you maintain a regular schedule -- and it can be a really good social activity, too.

    And meeting new people and learning new things is also a great (and fun) way to combat MCI.

    Can Strength Training Improve Mild Cognitive Impairment?

  2. Fish oil can beat dementia and extend lives

    Something fishy about life extension

    Your own doc will swear up and down there's nothing you can do about cognitive impairment... that age alone means your brain is starting to lose it... and that you're on the slow path to the three Ds: decline, dementia and death.

    Well, trust me when I tell you he's flat-out wrong.

    Maybe there's nothing HE can do about it, but there is something YOU can do -- because despite his grim predictions, you CAN slow, stop and even reverse cognitive impairment, cognitive decline and even dementia and extend your life.

    And if you're in the earliest stages of mild cognitive impairment, new research shows the one action you need to take right now that can slow it down: Take some fish oil.

    The omega-3 fatty acid DHA found in fish oil can stop aging on a cellular level -- protecting you from both the ravages of cognitive decline and maybe even death itself.

    The secret is in what's called the telomeres, or the little caps on the end of your DNA strands. They're like sands in the hourglass -- because the older you get, the shorter they get.

    And the shorter they get, the less time you've got left.

    When they get too short, disease such as dementia and even death aren't far behind -- but the study of 33 patients with mild cognitive impairment finds that DHA can slow the telomere shrink, perhaps preventing the decline from turning into dementia and saving your life at the same time.

    Now, I've seen the mainstream know-it-alls dismiss this as one small study. But the fact is, fish oil has been shown to slow telomere shrink before -- and in one major study last year, omega-3 fatty acids were shown to actually help them get LONGER.

    My advice: Take some fish oil.

    But if you want to extend your telomeres -- and extend your life -- don't stop there.

    I had the four simple, safe and inexpensive nutrients proven to slow telomere shrink in the January 2013 edition of my Douglass Report newsletter.

    Subscribers, use the password in the current issue to read it for free in my online archives. Not a subscriber? Don't let time run out on you! Sign up today for your own password for complete access to all my back issues.

  3. Carbs in new dementia link

    Seniors who eat the most carbs have a 400 percent higher risk of cognitive impairment -- while those who eat the most fats and proteins have a lower risk.
  4. Overeaters are underthinkers

    Want to keep your mind? Lose the weight. I won't mince words here: Fat people have a higher rate of any number of brain problems, from depression right on up the ladder to dementia.
  5. Fish for the brain

    All that fat you've been told NOT to eat? Turns out your brain needs it after all.
  6. The real secret to a super-charged brain

    Next time some holier-than-thou vegan starts blabbering about how man wasn't designed to eat meat, ask him if he knows what powers the human brain.
  7. Dementia-apnea link? Not so fast!

    Resting easy? No such thing when you're battling the nightly airless misery of sleep apnea. But let's not get carried away over a new study that links this breath-robbing condition to dementia, either -- because there's a lot more to this one than meets the eye.
  8. Booze for the brain

    Researchers looked at data on some 365,000 patients who took part in 143 studies published since 1977 and found that a moderate drinking habit can slash the risk of Alzheimer's disease, dementia, and other forms of cognitive impairment by 23 percent.
  9. B blend can slow dementia

    At first glance, it's a big win for supplements: Researchers say megadoses of B vitamins can dramatically cut back on the conditions that lead to dementia. But dig a little deeper, and you'll uncover yet another Big Pharma attempt to bully its way into the supplement game.

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