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Want to be strong, fit and healthy in your old age – and remember it? Did you know that dementia is the second leading cause of death in Australia? Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, impacting 70% of all people living with dementia. In this episode, Jen shares how you can prevent Alzheimer’s and support your mind and body to ensure your brain stays active, sharp and healthy as you age.

Did you enjoy the podcast today? Please let me know by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts. Every month I draw one lucky reviewer to have a free one-hour consultation with me. Also, remember to subscribe wherever you’re tuning in from so that you always catch the next episode.

SHOWNOTES

I want to be strong, fit and healthy and surfing in my 90s – and remembering that I’m surfing in my 90’s! 

I rode motorbikes for 40 years and gave it up as I had a friend who ended up with a brain injury that caused them to lose their memory for a significant amount of time, and it rattled me. I had ridden motorbikes my whole life, and it never bothered me because I thought I might break an arm or something. It never crossed my mind that I could injure my brain – and that’s too much of a risk for me. So, I took up surfing instead.

In 2010, a cool study showed that a loss of lean mass accelerated Alzheimer Disease and a lack of physical activity was the most common denominator. Researchers from Edith Cowan University looked at the diets of more than 500 older adults. They determined that those who ate the most protein had the lowest levels of Amyloid Beta – a precursor to Alzheimer’sAlzheimer’s – in their brains.

For your body to retain and grow lean muscle mass, we need about 2 grams per kilo of weight a day so, if you’re 60kg, that’s 120 grams. 

Think you’re getting enough protein? Here are some numbers for you to think about:

  • 30g of protein in 100g of chicken or tuna
  • 9g of protein in a cup of milk 
  • 7g of protein in a tablespoon of peanut butter
  • 6g of protein in a large egg

Most people need to supplement their protein intake as they don’t get enough from food. I have a protein nutrition shake every day, and that provides 35g. It’s a full meal replacement and also has all the fibre, enzymes, amino acids and pre and probiotics I need.

Within your daily diet, have a look at what your protein intake really is. You may need to make some adjustments to ensure you are getting exactly what your body needs each day.

How can you prevent Alzheimer’s?

There are seven pillars for a brain-healthy lifestyle – and they are all within your control:

  1. Regular exercise to retain lean muscle
  2. Healthy diet
  3. Mental stimulation
  4. Quality sleep
  5. Stress management
  6. Vascular health
  7. Social engagement

Exercise 

Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week. The ideal plan involves a combination of cardio exercise and strength training. Good activities for beginners include walking (with ankle weights) and swimming.

Build muscle to pump up your brain. Moderate levels of weight and resistance training increase muscle mass and help you maintain brain health. For those over 65, adding 2-3 strength sessions to your weekly routine may cut your risk of Alzheimer’s in half!

I love surfing as it makes me work on my balance – a physical and mental activity. Try walking along a 2×4 beam to help with your balance.

Healthy Diet 

You want to eat as close to nature as possible. Everything you need to know about having a healthy diet is covered in Episode #14 – go back and check this out.

Mental Stimulation 

You also want mental stimulation. Learning an instrument is one of the coolest ways to do this. You can make it fun – and we learn better when we have fun. I’ve taken up Ukulele in the last few years.

Quality Sleep

Quality sleep is crucial for flushing out toxins in the brain and giving it much-needed rest. Studies have linked poor sleep to higher levels of Amyloid Beta in the brain, which can further disrupt the deep sleep necessary for memory formation. Find out more about the importance of sleep in Episode #1.

Vascular Health

We want a good strong blood supply coming to the brain, and that’s where the lean muscle comes in. As we age, we build less lean muscle, and we get less active, but we need enough lean muscle to squeeze the blood vessels to pump the blood uphill to our brain.

We want the walls of our veins to be good and our blood to not be sticky. For this, get into the garlic and Omega 3’s3’s – flaxseed oil is brilliant for this. I would take 2,000 units morning and night as a minimum. If you’re on heart blood thinners, check it with your doctor first. Vitamin C helps keep the integrity of our veins, and of course, we want the right amount of protein, as stated earlier.

Keep in mind that the body you have now was made over the last ten years. Consciously work now to build a healthy body and mind.

Helpful Links

Jen’s protein shake

Healthy Life Hacks

So, the healthy life hacks I want to leave you with today are: 

  1. Go through the seven pillars for a brain-healthy lifestyle and work out what areas you need to work on to make sure your brain stays sharp as you age.
  2. Determine what you want your body to be like in the next ten years – and start living it today.

Did you enjoy the podcast today? Please let me know by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts. Every month I draw one lucky reviewer to have a free one-hour consultation with me. Also, remember to subscribe wherever you’re tuning in from so that you always catch the next episode.

Are you looking for more great resources? Get a free copy of my Feed Your Body ebook here and be sure to explore my blog while you are there.