Fitness experts have long told us that regular exercise, like walking, is a smart thing to do, but according to new research, that may be true in a much more literal sense.
According to a new study, walking may ward off mental decline and dementia. The researchers asked about 300 healthy people from 70- to 90-years-old to record how many blocks they walked in a week. Nine years later, the researchers took high-resolution brain scans of the volunteers and found that the more those people walked at the beginning of the study, the greater their brain volume.
The researchers did some follow-up about four years later and found that people who walked six to nine miles a week had half the risk of developing memory problems.
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Add yet another long-term health issue to the list of risks of being overweight. Previous studies have connected middle age obesity to dementia in late adulthood. Now, scientists may have found a link between Alzheimer’s and a hormone that helps control appetite. Leptin tells your body when you are satiated and reduces appetite. It is a hormone that is produced by fat cells. Research conducted during 12 years at the Boston University Medical Center found that those participants with the lowest levels of leptin had a 25% chance of developing Alzheimer’s, while those with the highest levels of leptin had only a 6% chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
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Maybe it’s sad to say, but I have to have my coffee in the morning. Every morning. But, I think when it’s all said and done, I only average two cups a day (three on a “good day”). So, I’m not a raging caffeinated lunatic.
In fact, my habit may be a good thing… since there are actually purported health benefits to my morning joe.
A new study even suggests that coffee may keep your mental health sharp when you get to your golden years. This was a study long in the making. Swedish and Danish researchers tracked coffee consumption in a group of about 1,400 middle-aged men and women for an average of 21 years.
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According to new research, a Mediterranean diet may help Alzheimer’s patients live longer. For those of us on the younger side, it’s also great for your heart health.
So what’s all the fuss about the food eaten in this beautiful region of the world?
The Mediterranean diet is loaded with fruits, vegetables, grains and olive oil, and more fish than red meat. That’s not totally alien to what the rest of us think of as a healthy diet.
Another staple to the diet is moderate consumption of red wine, which is probably largely responsible for its trendiness.
Regardless of what your motivation may be, here is a rundown as to why it can be such a healthy diet choice:
The core to the healthfulness of the diet is how low it is in saturated fats. There is plenty of fat, but usually in the form of olive oil, nuts and fish, which has the much-touted omega-3 fatty acids.
Now to the wine… having a glass with your dinner has been shown to have health benefits. Red wine contains antioxidants, which can help fight heart disease. A glass (or up to two for men) can also lower cholesterol. New information is coming out that it may even be good for reducing your risk for diabetes.
Of course, this isn’t the only way to eat your way to great health. But if the idea of olive oil, moderate amounts of bread and pasta, with a little wine and lots of fruits and veggies sounds tantalizing to you, then you should explore your options further.