The Connection Between Heart Health and Dementia

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Dementia is a disease that affects the brain, but it is also linked to heart health. Since the brain is one of the most critical organs in the body, it controls various functions. The choices you make for your body affect your brain in ways you might not necessarily realize. Making the right choices to protect your body is the best way to ensure that you can live a healthy life.

According to studies conducted, people with better cardiovascular health at age 50 are less likely to develop dementia in later life. You can reduce your risk of dementia by controlling high blood pressure and cholesterol in earlier stages of life. In contrast, dementia can also affect your body, including the cardiovascular system. So, they are linked to each other, regardless of which symptoms occur first.

The Effect of Strokes

Conditions affecting heart health, such as blood pressure and cholesterol, can result in a higher risk of dementia in the future. When an individual suffers from a stroke, they might become more prone to developing dementia. If that does happen, the senior may need to move into a retirement home that provides specialized care. You can receive dementia care at Sagecare to manage the progression with professional help.

After being diagnosed with dementia, an individual’s life may change in various ways. Living in a memory care home with specialized care for seniors can help residents age peacefully during those times. With the availability of memory-based activities, seniors will also stay engaged at all times.

A single stroke can completely alter the life of the individual that suffers. When a blood clot blocks blood flow to the brain and causes a stroke or attack, it can cause severe damages, resulting in dementia in the future.

Heart failure is also associated with a more than 80% increased risk of developing dementia. Attempting to reduce the risk of heart failure by performing regular checkups and staying fit can reduce the risk of dementia in the long run.

Your Age Plays a Role

Both cardiovascular issues and dementia become prevalent with age. The chance of developing dementia or heart problems at a young age is lower than 50 or above. Poor cardiovascular health at midlife has connections with reduced brain volume in later years.

Research links dementia to the same risk factors that cause heart disease, strokes, obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Some of these diseases get more prevalent with age, affecting both heart and brain health. It is essential to focus on heart health by performing regular checkups before you’re 50 years old. The sooner you catch a problem, the higher chances you have of preventing them from spreading.

What You Eat Matters

If you consume bad foods for your heart, they may be just as bad for your brain. Preventing heart disease by eating healthy foods means that your chances of stroke will reduce, resulting in a lower risk of dementia. 

You can prevent heart disease by controlling your portion size, consuming more vegetables, and switching up the items on your plate. The more you work on protecting your heart, the further your brain functions will improve.

A healthy diet plays a significant role in various bodily functions. Along with consuming the right foods, it is also important to eliminate certain items. For example, some foods are known to increase dementia risks. The list includes white foods such as pasta, processed meats, and processed cheeses. Although consuming small amounts of any of these items will not cause dementia, heavy consumption can affect the brain and heart in the long term.

Put the Cigarette and Drink Away

Smoking is associated with several health problems, including the heart and brain. It can result in heart problems and also dementia. Smoking cigarettes increases the risk of vascular problems, resulting in strokes or more minor bleeds in the brain. The best way to avoid either of the risks is by cutting down or quitting smoking. Since there are many different types of chemicals in a cigarette, it is toxic to several body parts.

Similarly, high levels of alcohol consumption can also lead to heart problems and dementia. Long-term alcohol use weakens the heart muscle and reduces its ability to pump blood, resulting in a stroke and increase the chances of dementia. 

Eliminating cigarettes and alcohol or reducing its consumption can reduce your risk of developing dementia and having a stroke or cancer.

You Have to Get Moving

Physical activity plays a significant role in preventing dementia. Lack of movement can put you at higher risk of heart attacks and strokes, leading to dementia. Being active is one of the best ways to protect every organ in your body.

Lack of movement can contribute to various health problems that eventually lead to dementia. Although exercising cannot cure dementia, it can reduce its risks. Physical activity positively affects the brain and improves cognitive performance. Exercising consistently in mid-life leaves positive impacts on memory in later life.

Being active is good for the heart since it raises good cholesterol levels, lowers blood pressure, helps maintain weight, and control blood sugar. It can also improve your brain functions and improve your cognitive abilities. Physical activity also contributes to achieving a healthy weight, which is helpful for the heart as well.

Prioritizing Your Health

Many factors contribute to the functions of a body that you might not be aware of at the moment. It can be beneficial to do your research and consult a professional to ensure healthy lifestyle choices. Any decision you make for your body now shapes the way things might look in the future.

The best way to take care of your physical and mental health is to eliminate bad habits and replace them with good ones. The heart and brain are vital organs that contribute to various functions, such as making decisions and staying alive. Neglecting one organ can harm the other, and you might not even be aware of it. Keep the connections between your heart and brain health before making any lifestyle choices.

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