“Couch potato” is a kind term for a lazy person who just sits on the couch watching TV instead of being active. We know that physical exercise is vital for body health, but did you know that mental exercise is beneficial for mental health and can help stave off dementia?
We like to look for quick fixes for everything, including our health. When it comes to diets and cures, many people ask their doctor for pills, vitamins, or the latest fad remedy. When it comes to preserving cognitive health, there are no “miracle cures,” just the old-fashioned prescription that works for both body and mind: exercise.
Recent medical journals have reported that perhaps “35% of dementia cases might be prevented if people do things including exercising and engaging in cognitively stimulating activities” (The Lancet). There are many factors that weigh in when seeking to prevent dementia — most of which are under a person’s control. These include obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, inactivity, social isolation (particularly problematic during a pandemic), and low education levels. Of course, there are other variables and risk factors, but there is increasing evidence that positive lifestyle changes can improve one’s chances of maintaining a healthy brain.
Simple brain exercises that stimulate learning, such as reading books and magazines, playing games, and using computers, help delay the onset of memory and thinking problems. Makes sense — If you want to build up your thinking “muscles,” do thinking exercises.
Bottom line: Don’t let your brain sit around vegetating — socialize, read, write, play, ponder, and do anything that wakes up those little gray cells and keeps them alert! You can begin by watching this brief video presentation from the Mayo Clinic:
South Mountain Memory Care focuses on high-quality, personalized care. The brand new building is a stand-alone memory care community, meaning that the entire building, staff, and programs are designed to serve residents with cognitive issues. To ensure person-centered care and attention, we have accommodations for up to 28 residents. The building is divided into two neighborhoods (wings), each offering 10 private suites and 2 semi-private suites. South Mountain Memory Care is located in the Allentown suburb of Emmaus, Pennsylvania, and it is easily accessible from the Lehigh Valley, New Jersey, and Philadelphia. For more information, go to southmountainmemorycare.com/.