Your brain is the body’s most vital organ.
It controls much more than your thoughts and consciousness, with it playing a vital role in the regulation and function of your vital and in processes like breathing and digesting food. It’s the control center, the part of the body that is at the basis of everyday life.
In a way, it is kind of like a muscle. It can be exercised and expanded, and through this, it can become stronger. Like a muscle, it needs proper nutrition and rest to thrive and perform its functions to the best of its abilities. Doing so can reduce the risk of poorer health outcomes, and possibly conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Keep reading to find out how you can improve your brain’s health and function.
Try a New Activity
For older adults, learning a new activity can be incredibly beneficial. It challenges the mind and helps it form new connections. Furthermore, it can expand horizons and an understanding of the world around you.
Brenda Abbott-Shultz, RN, is Sagora Senior Living’s Vice President of Resident Services. She has spent the majority of her career studying the functions of the brain. Time and time again, she encounters the same facts about what activities most benefit seniors.
“Seniors who learn something new reduce their chance of dementia,” Brenda said. “All the synapses in your brain are firing and continue to work when you learn something new, and they have to work harder throughout your brain. That keeps you young of mind.”
Brenda points out that learning something new can reduce the risk of conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. She has put that to practice across Sagora communities, developing programs to seek to stimulate the brain and provide chances to learn new things.
She recommends that seniors learn how to use programs like Zoom, Skype or Facetime on their phones and computers. In addition to its benefits to brain health, it can help seniors stay in touch with friends and family members.
Isolation is perhaps the biggest driver of poor health outcomes in seniors, and unfortunately, many seniors that live alone face challenges stemming from isolation including loneliness. When combined, this leads to a 50 percent higher chance of dementia.
Senior socialization is one of the subjects that drives Brenda each day. She has studied the benefits of it, using it to craft Sagora’s lifestyle programs. Sagora Senior Living communities provide ample opportunities for socialization and forming new friendships. Most communities boast around a dozen daily events, including outings, happy hours and more!
Recently, studies have revealed the extent to which diet plays into the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Specifically, the Western diet’s tendency to create inflammation can lead to poorer health outcomes.
Sagora Senior Living’s Senior Culinary Director John Tolbert has been following these studies. Their conclusions have drawn him to the MIND Diet, a Mediterranean-inspired diet that may help reduce the risk of cognitive decline. These diets also contribute to better health by reducing the risk of heart disease and other conditions.
Specifically, the MIND diet recommends eating less processed food in addition to staples such as leafy vegetables, nuts, whole grains, poultry and more.
Click here to learn more about Sagora Senior Living’s Culinary programs!
Sagora Senior Living provides residents with a high standard of living and inclusive amenities at each of our 61 communities. Their wellness is our primary focus, and we work tirelessly to ensure that they have the support they need in order to enjoy life while receiving compassionate, quality care.
Tour your local Sagora Senior Living community today to learn more!