Many countries in the world are facing a potential health crisis as the population ages. In North America, millions of Baby Boomers are turning sixty every day.
Aging can bring with it many benefits such as increased wisdom and experience, but aging also increases the risk of serious health problems affecting the body and the brain.

One of the most serious health problems facing people as they get older is the increased risk of dementia. Dementia is a word used to cover a variety of different types of loss of brain function. The most well known type of dementia facing older people is Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease leads to an irreversible destruction of brain cells. At the same time, the types of neurotransmitters the brain needs in order to think and remember are also destroyed.

Over a period of years, the patient suffering from Alzheimer’s disease progresses from a state of mild forgetfulness to a profound loss of intellect. This is accompanied by an inability to think and remember. The sense of identity is lost. Forms of dementia such as Alzheimer’s disease are one of the main reasons why many senior citizens are unable to live independently.

At the present time, there is no known cause of Alzheimer’s disease, and unfortunately, there is no known cure. A variety of medications are currently prescribed to try slow down and offset some of the forgetfulness that Alzheimer’s causes. Many other potential medications for Alzheimer’s are in the experimental stages.

Although Alzheimer’s can’t be cured or prevented by medication at the present time, scientists who study brain aging have discovered that in many cases, the health of our aging brains can be improved by the life style choices we make.

The brain damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease appears to increase with the incidence of stroke and diabetes. We can reduce the chance of brain damage from Alzheimer’s by controlling our blood pressure to lower the risk of stroke. If we develop diabetes, we need to strictly control our blood sugar levels to minimize the damage that Alzheimer’s disease might cause.

Other types of lifestyle changes are associated with better brain health in old age. For example, people who continue to use their brains actively in old age are more likely to have good brain function. This may be because their brain cells keep making new connections with each other. To keep your brain active, take classes, read a lot, and take up new hobbies that are mentally challenging.

Physical exercise also appears to have an important effect in maintaining brain health in our later years. You don’t need to be running marathons to keep your brain cells healthy, but you should make a commitment to get regular exercise several times a week. If you choose a form of exercise you really enjoy, you will be much more likely to stick with the program.

There is some evidence that a diet that includes a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables may be protective against Alzheimer’s disease. Fresh fruits and vegetables contain a lot of antioxidants that can help prevent free radical damage. More high quality omega 3 oils from sources such as flax seed and ocean fish may also be beneficial to brain cells.

Finally, people who have healthy brains in old age are likely to be those who have maintained good social and emotional connections with a variety of friends and family members. People who have little social contact and who are socially isolated are more likely to suffer a decline in their brain health.

Although at the present time, scientists can’t reverse the brain damage that Alzheimer’s causes, some simple and pleasant life style changes may help you successfully maintain a healthy brain, body and mind as you grow older.

Author's Bio: 

This article is by self improvement author Royane Real. You can read many more articles that will improve your life at my new website at