According to Lancet Public Health estimates, the number of people with dementia worldwide will triple by 2050. But it is inevitable that he will find this dire situation. Studies show that by making lifestyle changes you can prevent or delay dementia by an amazing 40%.

“This rapid increase means you or someone you know could be affected by this disease,” says memory health coach Francine Vaskavitz. Eat this, not that! “Currently there is no cure for dementia. Your best defense is in your lifestyle. The Lancet Commission estimates that lifestyle changes can prevent or delay up to 40% of dementia cases.

While many of these lifestyle habits may be familiar, they serve as a reminder that taking action on them now will improve your health and add quality years to your life.

“The sooner you start, the more protected you are,” Vaskavitz says.

Dr. Jacob Haskalovici, founder and chief medical officer at Clearing, a digital healthcare platform, reminds us that dementia doesn’t just affect people over 65.

“It usually involves more extensive and serious changes than forgetting a word here and there or occasionally dealing with mental fog,” he explains. “While it is difficult to predict exactly who will develop dementia, certain lifestyle habits increase the risk of developing dementia. These include getting too little sleep on a regular basis (usually less than six hours a night), eating foods that burn fat (high-fat foods, red meat, high-sugar foods, and processed foods), being lonely or socially isolated for long periods of time, sitting a lot, and smoking regularly. Or drinking more than recommended.

Haskalovici adds that taking calcium supplements can increase the risk of dementia. Having ADHD, or having a family history of dementia or head trauma increases the risk of developing the condition.

But addressing the aforementioned lifestyle habits, especially being healthy, can reduce the chances of dementia.

“Overall fitness comes from a combination of following a Mediterranean diet and exercising or at least being active on a regular basis,” says Hascalovici. “Being healthy reduces your risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, depression, heart disease and many other problems. Whether you’re overweight or ‘skinny fat’, being fit is important – fitness works for everyone.

As of 2011 World Health Organization Up to 14% of Alzheimer’s cases can be caused by smoking. It says that quitting can reduce your risk of developing the disease or delay the onset of the disease.

Another way to reduce your risk of dementia is to get your hearing tested annually, says Waskavitz. Hearing loss accounts for 8% of dementia worldwide.

“High blood pressure, diabetes and obesity can greatly increase your risk of dementia,” she says. “It’s also one of the top three preventable risk factors for dementia. If you’re focused on reducing your risk of dementia, you need to know your numbers and plan to optimize them. A healthy diet and lifestyle are an important part of supporting your physical and cognitive health as you age.”

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