Stay one step ahead of Parkinson’s disease.

Parkinson’s disease, a degenerative condition of the brain, affects about 1% of people over the age of 60. The symptoms range from a mild non-disabling tremor to more troublesome symptoms like slowness, troubles with motor movements and troubles with balance leading to falls. It’s known that there are some prodromal – or early – symptoms […]

Why older folks should go to camp.

A quick search of summer camp options in my area reveals daytime or sleep away camps with activities including the following:  nature exploration, musical theater, rock music performance, fencing, robotics, cartooning, rocket space science, sailing, circus arts, computer coding, zoo veterinarian shadowing, architecture, to name only a few.  And that doesn’t even include all the […]

Cognition by numbers

Here’s some numbers for you. In a study called Exercise for cognitive brain health in aging: A systematic review for an evaluation of dose, researchers performed what is called a meta-analysis of many studies on exercise and cognitive decline to see if they could determine a “dose” of exercise that is required to make a difference.  They […]

Eat your spinach! Kale?

In a study called Nutrients and bioactives in green leafy vegetables and cognitive decline: Prospective study, published in the journal Neurology, researchers wanted to measure the protective effect on cognitive decline by green vegetables.  Subjects were given a questionnaire to determine amount of consumption of spinach, collard greens, kale and lettuce.  Then they were followed for […]

Dementia avoidance: Good leads but elusive evidence.

I just came across a study by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS) a body of experts that advises for governmental policy on pressing issues.  The study, called Preventing Cognitive Decline and Dementia: A Way Forward, looked at all the evidence there is on preventing dementia with certain actions or strategies.  The 3 specific strategies […]

Dementia rate goes… Down! (Part 2)

In a recent post, I reviewed an article about declining rates of dementia between 2000 and 2012, in which most of the difference was accounted for by increasing levels of education.  In an even longer term study based on data from the Framingham Heart Study, there was a similar finding. The article, called Incidence of Dementia […]

Dementia rate goes…..Down!

In an article called  A Comparison of the Prevalence of Dementia in the United States in 2000 and 2012, authors report on data from a long-term study on dementia rates in Americans 65 years-old or older.  The main finding of this study was that in the year 2000, 11.6% of this age group had dementia […]

Exercise to improve cognition.

A small study published in the journal Neurology in November 2016 showed preliminary evidence that a regular exercise routine may help cognition in subjects diagnosed with mild dementia felt to be due to the second most common cause of dementia.  While dementia of the Alzheimer’s type is the most common, Vascular Cognitive Impairment (VC I) comes […]

I’ll gladly exercise now to avoid a stroke later.

It’s fairly obvious that physical fitness is good for many reasons.  Cardiorespiratory fitness that comes from regular exercise has been shown to reduce the risk of stroke.  But in most studies it’s hard to separate the effect of fitness from other risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease.  The person who […]

Cardiovascular health may prevent cognitive decline.

The term “synergy” may be overused in the business world but in medicine, we’re still ok with it. I always like to point out ways to affect more than one area with a single effort.  One of my favorite examples is that many migraine preventives also help with sleep or with anxiety.  But that’s another […]