I don’t just want to live a long life, I want to live a long, healthy, present life. That’s why I’m so passionate about taking proactive measures to support a healthy brain before alarming symptoms like memory-loss occur.
Research shows there are multiple modifiable risk factors that influence the likelihood of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s later in life. This means we have the power to shape the health we want to have as we age, we just need to put a little effort into the present.
The FINGER study (the Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability) was the first of its kind to look at how we can prevent dementia using a multifaceted approach based on lifestyle factors. This two-year, randomized controlled trial, with 1,260 participants looked at the impacts of diet, physical activity, cognitive training and social activities, and intensive monitoring of metabolic and vascular risk factors on cognition in older at-risk individuals.
And the results provide empowering evidence for the future of brain health.
Comprehensive neuropsychological assessment at the end of the two-year study showed that using a multimodal approach focused on lifestyle interventions like nutrition and exercise had a significant benefit on cognition, including the areas of memory, executive function, and psychomotor speed.
For decades we were taught there was no stopping cognitive decline, now we know it’s possible to maintain a youthful brain into old age using accessible means, like what we put on the end of our fork.
Last week on The Doctor’s Farmacy, I was joined by one of the leading experts in Alzheimer’s and dementia research. Dr. Marwan Sabbagh discusses the exciting and powerful steps we can all take for a better brain as we age, even when we’re up against poor genes. He shares why genetic testing can help us leverage our lifestyle choices even further, why diet is such a fundamental part of any brain-boosting plan, where environmental toxins come into play, and so much more.
Dr. Sabbagh’s latest book provides a uniquely hopeful look at his experience working with a woman who had a 91% chance of developing Alzheimer’s and how she got proactive in the face of a terrifying genetic risk.
Wishing you health and happiness,
Mark Hyman, MD