Neurodegenerative disorders are now more common than ever, as more and more people being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease every day. This medical condition is highly invalidating, starting with minor forgetfulness and progressing on a gradual basis.
Physical Activity Can Help Reduce Alzheimer’s Risk
Researchers at the University of British Columbia recently published a study in which they demonstrated that physical activity could help keep neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease, at a safe distance.
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The study could not have come at a better time, as medical professionals are struggling to find new and efficient ways to prevent such conditions. Up until now, it was known that the diet could also help reduce the risk of such diseases, as doctors recommended the best brain foods like nuts and seeds, fatty fish and blueberries, for such purposes. Check out our article 12 Surprising Foods That Can Boost Your Brain Power Now to learn more.
Plus, Exercise is Beneficial for Those Who’ve Developed the Condition Already
According to the results of the survey, it was established that those who already have Alzheimer’s disease, could also reap the benefits of the regular physical activity. The more engaged one is in physical activity, the better their overall performance is going to be.
Moreover, physical exercise is considered to be an affordable and accessible method to keep such conditions under control. It allows for the efficient management of existent symptoms, paving the way for other forms of dementia and neurodegenerative diseases, which afflict millions in the U.S. alone.
When someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, this means that a long and hard journey lies ahead. At first, one begins to forget small details but, as the condition progresses, the overall quality of life can be genuinely affected.
Physical activity can help patients who are suffering from this condition to enjoy a better quality of life. It can keep them mobile and balanced, which is essential in old age. Moreover, it has a highly beneficial effect on the overall cognitive functioning, which is one of the biggest benefits to take into consideration.
Physical Exercise and Its Neuroprotective Effect
In studying people who have suffered from brain injuries and memory loss, scientists were easily able to conclude that physical activity has a neuroprotective effect. In fact, physical therapy, often used for the rehabilitation of such patients, is based on this very same concept. The idea was extended to patients suffering from neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease, making the subject of numerous studies, such as the one mentioned above.
According to a study published in The Lancet Neurology, physical activity was found to help improve the overall cognitive functioning and even aid in reducing the risk of dementia in middle-aged adults. The same study confirmed that regular physical exercise, performed in the available time of leisure, could also help delay the onset of neurodegenerative conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease.
Earlier on, a study published in Jama had confirmed the fact that physical activity could help improve the cognitive function in older adults (already presenting cognitive impairment). The study drew attention to the fact that physical activity could also improve the mood and overall quality of life for patients suffering from such cognitive impairment.
It also helped reduce the risk of depression. And from a physical point of view, it reduced the number of falls, increasing the overall mobility. It was suggested that patients should be provided more often with opportunities for movement, being brought into environments that are enriched with physical activities.
In 2011, a study was published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, discussing physical exercise as a measure to prevent dementia and the general aging of the brain. The study drew attention to the fact that, for such categories of people, general aerobic exercise had the most benefits to offer. It was also highlighted that middle-aged adults who engage in a regular physical activity, present a lower risk for neurodegenerative conditions later on in life. Aerobic exercise improved the level of mobility, eliminating some of the risks of a sedentary lifestyle. Moreover, it improved overall cognitive functioning and spatial memory.
All of these studies demonstrate that physical exercise can help protect the brain from invalidating conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease. The neuroprotective effect of physical exercise is to be further studied, to determine the actual mechanism behind it.
Today, studies performed on animals have demonstrated that physical activity stimulates the neuroplasticity of the brain. This means that certain areas of the brain are capable of taking over functions that would have otherwise been lost, due to cognitive impairment and loss of grey matter.
Physical exercise has also been identified to help reduce the risk of life-threatening conditions, such as the cerebrovascular stroke.
Alzheimer’s disease is one of the most common types of dementia, affecting older adults and having an adverse impact on their overall quality of life. Physical exercise has a neuroprotective effect, which is the main reason why it could be used as a preventative measure for this condition.
Dietary supplements can also be beneficial for mild cognitive impairment, being more than beneficial for older adults. These can be taken to help improve brain health and boosting memory, while allowing you to help keep the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia down to a minimum.
Meighan Sembrano is an enthusiast and a passionate writer. She is an expertise in writing beauty and skin care content. She has also contributed in the health and fitness field. Her work gives an enthusiast twist to the her readers. She resonates the readers with her sincere and thoughtful words. You can follow Meighan on Twitter and Facebook.