Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Meditation (et al) May Help Slow Down Dementia

A recent article the Benefits of Yoga and Meditation for Alzheimer’s and Dementia stated that meditation may delay the onset of dementia by 7 years. (Note: Be careful not to drop the first “t” in meditation, as a co-author did, because the result, mediation, will actually accelerate dementia for an equivalent period of time.) Now 7 years does not seem like a lot unless you are already in the senior citizen group. Any reprieve from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia is well worth the effort.

Dementia, according to Wikipedia, is a broad category of brain diseases that cause long term, usually gradual, decrease in the ability to think and remember, of a degree great enough to affect a person's daily functioning. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60% to 70% of cases of dementia.[1][2] It is a chronic neurodegenerative disease that usually starts slowly and gets worse over time.[1][2]The most common early symptom is difficulty in remembering recent events (short-term memory loss). If you do not remember why you started reading this blog, you may be a candidate.

The article extolls the virtues of yoga and meditation for both the individual and caregiver to make life less stressful and more fulfilling. Basically it is saying that you have to exercise your brain and body to maintain your “youth”.

Practicing Yoga is an easy solution to avoid the sedentary state that will eventually kill you. There are many forms of exercise but you have to perform them religiously. Meditation is a way to control anger, compulsions, and exercise your brain. There is a role for puzzles, games and focused mindfulness.

Take a class and find out whether these strategies will work for you. Medical science allows us to live longer, but preferably in an awake and aware state.

Keep in mind that causes and cures for Alzheimer’s are popping up daily. In the exercise category Pilates or TRX is likely as effective as yoga.  Not to mention swimming, surfing, sailing, and other activities conducive to meditative presence.

And if you get into the supplement category, there are far too many, from omega oils, to various roots and herbs.  And then there are the toxins, take aluminum salts in some antacids.

It is sufficient to say that if you read this blog, and you remember any of it, you don’t have to worry for a while.

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