This is Alzheimer’s awareness day and here is an acronym that everyone should learn: S.H.I.E.L.D.

S.H.I.E.L.D. stands for the six things that everyone can do to help protect their brain from this dreaded disease.

In the past research was aimed at protein build-up (plaques and tangles) but the latest thinking is that INFLAMATION is the culprit. Here are six life-style changes that can help reduce inflammation in the brain and better protect you from Alzheimer’s disease.

1. Sleep. Get at least 7/8 hours of a night (Naps count, too.)

2. Handle stress. Learn to manage stress effectively.

3. Interact with real people. Don’t become isolated or think playing on a computer counts.

4. Exercise. You don’t have to join a gym or run a marathon. Thirty minutes of brisk walking is all you need.

5. Diet. Watch your weight but more importantly be careful with what you eat. Lots of fruit , veggies and omega rich foods – you know the Mediterranean diet.

Rev. Michael Heath, LMHC, Fellow AAPC              9 21 2019