Yet 80 percent of respondents want to reduce their risk of dementia.
- A new MDVIP/Ipsos survey found that only 35 percent of Americans know the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
- Eighty percent of respondents said they want to reduce their risks.
- An estimated 7.1 million Americans over the age of 65 will suffer from Alzheimer's by 2025.
Credit: logika600 / Shutterstock<p>Remaining healthy requires regular screenings. Here again we see a disassociation between risk reduction and proactivity. Seventy-seven percent of respondents don't talk to their doctors about lifestyle habits that support brain health; 51 percent have never been screened for depression; 44 percent have never had a neurological exam; and 32 percent have never been screened for hearing problems. </p><p>Common early warning signs of dementia, <a href="https://news.yahoo.com/americans-worry-alzheimers-disease-survey-140644803.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">according to</a> Dr. Jason Karlawish, co-director of the Penn Memory Center, include repetitive questions and stories, difficulties with complex daily tasks, and trouble with orientation. </p><p>In terms of intervention, <a href="https://bigthink.com/21st-century-spirituality/does-lack-of-exercise-lead-to-dementia" target="_self">exercise</a>, <a href="https://bigthink.com/surprising-science/obesity-dementia" target="_self">diet</a>, building a <a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/brain-reserve" target="_self">brain reserve</a>, and challenging your brain (such as learning a new language or musical instrument) are all proven methods for staving off the ravages of Alzheimer's. Oxytocin has also <a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/alzheimers-oxytocin" target="_self">showed promise</a> in brain-addled mice, while researchers found positive results for a <a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/intermittent-fasting" target="_self">group of intermittent fasters</a> in promoting neurogenesis. </p><p>Epidemiologist Bryan James says that dementia is <a href="https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2013/04/15/176920391/how-exercise-and-other-activities-beat-back-dementia" target="_blank">not an inevitable result</a> of aging. </p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"It's simply not pre-destined for all human beings. Lots of people live into their 90s and even 100s with no symptoms of dementia." </p><p>Professor of neurology at Boston University School of Medicine, Andrew Budson, <a href="https://news.yahoo.com/americans-worry-alzheimers-disease-survey-140644803.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">recommends</a> aerobic exercise and the Mediterranean diet. As has long been known, whole grains, fruits and vegetables, fish and shellfish, and healthy fasts like nuts and olive oil seem to have brain-boosting properties. </p><p>To learn more, take the <a href="https://www.mdvip.com/brain-health-iq-quiz" target="_blank">Brain Health IQ quiz</a>.</p><p><span></span>--</p><p><em>Stay in touch with Derek on <a href="http://www.twitter.com/derekberes" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, <a href="https://www.facebook.com/DerekBeresdotcom" target="_blank">Facebook</a> and <a href="https://derekberes.substack.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Substack</a>. His next book is</em> "<em>Hero's Dose: The Case For Psychedelics in Ritual and Therapy."</em></p>
According to researchers at Washington State University, the answer is yes.
- Washington State University researchers found that exercising while pregnant might reduce the risk of obesity in children.
- The study, conducted on mice, also discovered that offspring of fit mothers have better metabolic health.
- Infant mice whose mothers exercised had higher levels of brown adipose tissue, aka brown fat.
5 Best Pregnancy Lower Back Pain Relief Exercises - Ask Doctor Jo<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="fdd36ec1093139eb911d2f0d5f11c4c5"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/S3xXurLpfDk?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>Du and Son's study might be the first to display the possible benefits of exercising while pregnant. Previous research has linked maternal obesity to infants. This study shows the benefits of exercise, one of which is better glucose tolerance, meaning children have a reduced likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes. Son <a href="https://news.wsu.edu/2020/04/17/exercise-pregnancy-reduces-obesity-among-offspring/" target="_blank">says</a>,</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"These findings suggest that physical activity during pregnancy for fit women is critical for a newborn's metabolic health. We think this research could ultimately help address obesity in the United States and other countries."</p><p>Still, myths perpetuate regarding the efficacy of exercising while pregnant. <a href="https://www.glamour.com/story/enough-with-the-myths-about-exercise-during-pregnancy" target="_blank">According to</a> NYU OB-GYN, Jennifer Aquino, as long as women stay hydrated while working out, they are unlikely to experience ill effects. Overheating is a major concern, however. Avoid exercise in hot environments. Eating a snack before working out is also a good idea. </p><p>The <a href="https://www.webmd.com/baby/guide/exercise-during-pregnancy" target="_blank">current guidelines</a> for exercising while pregnant are similar to everyone else: 150 minutes of moderate level fitness, split between cardiovascular and strength training. Pregnant women generally want to choose low impact options, such as swimming and indoor cycling. Of course, every woman's approach should be tailored to meet their needs and pre-pregnancy fitness levels. </p>
Alysia Montano runs in the Women"s 800 Meter opening round during Day 1 of the 2017 USA Track & Field Championships at Hornet Stadium on June 22, 2017 in Sacramento, California.
Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images<p>As a general guideline, my advice as a fitness instructor (who has taught hundreds of pregnant women over the last 16 years) has been to keep up their regimen as best they can, provided they are healthy enough to do so and with modifications. I don't advise learning anything new during this time as that could increase their risk for injury. If an expecting mother does want to engage in new exercise routines, medical professionals advicse slow adoption. </p><p>Again, anecdotally, I've seen a range of responses. Some women choose to scale back their routines or even stop working out if adverse reactions begin (usually causing them to take bed rest). I've also seen one instructor friend teach kickboxing and perform handstands while nine months pregnant. I even had a woman in her fortieth week take my class to try to "get the baby out already." (He was born the next day, though I take no credit for that.) </p><p>It should not surprise anyone that healthier mothers have healthier babies. We are well aware of the genetic consequences of our parents that we pass to our offspring. We also know well the behavioral imprints our forebears leave on us. A guy named Freud wrote a few books about that. Of course, parental behavior affects our development in every capacity, fitness levels included. Thanks to this team in Washington, we have proof.</p><p>--</p><p><em>Stay in touch with Derek on <a href="http://www.twitter.com/derekberes" target="_blank">Twitter</a> and <a href="https://www.facebook.com/DerekBeresdotcom" target="_blank">Facebook</a>. His next book is</em> "Hero's Dose: The Case For Psychedelics in Ritual and Therapy." </p>
Thankfully, there are ways to combat mental and physical fatigue, even in isolation.
- With tens of millions of Americans sheltering at home, many people feel exhausted.
- Reasons range from a lack of routine, emotional uncertainty, poor nutrition, and alcohol abuse.
- Keeping your daily habits in place as much as possible is important for combating lethargy.
Optimize Your Brain: The Science of Smarter Eating | Dr. Drew Ramsey<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="a5fc406dabd4e2acb818f68be3378bb5"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/J8BnvIku0kw?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><h3>Here Comes the Sun</h3><p>While many cities have promoted outdoor exercise, some have shut down parks, trails, and beaches (as is the case here in Los Angeles). While there is an <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/backlash-coronavirus-simulation-medium-said-runners-need-32-feet-distance-2020-4" target="_blank">ongoing debate</a> over safe distance protocols continues, we know that a <a href="https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/seasonal-affective-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20364651" target="_blank">lack of sunlight can cause depression</a>. It might be Spring, but if you don't have access to outdoor space to walk and exercise, you might be negatively impacted. Reduced activity slows your metabolism, adding to the sluggishness; less daylight also reduces melatonin and serotonin production in your brain, which could further provoke anxiety and depression. </p><p><strong>Cure</strong>: If you can get outside once a day, even for a walk around the block, do so. As for movement, streaming classes have never been more popular. You can find just about any format you desire on Instagram Live or YouTube. Plenty of world-class instructors are selling classes on Zoom. A little movement goes a long way. (With Equinox being closed, I've been teaching t<a href="https://www.derekberes.com/yoga" target="_blank">hree live-stream yoga classes</a> a week, which are all <a href="https://www.youtube.com/derekberes" target="_blank">archived on my YouTube channel</a>.)</p><h3>Routine</h3><p>Humans are habitual animals. We feel out of our element when our schedules are thrown off. Adjusting to a new routine sometimes bring a sense of refreshment, but given the stress many of us are feeling financially—22 million Americans have <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/16/economy/unemployment-benefits-coronavirus/index.html" target="_blank">filed for employment</a> in just four weeks—it can seem hard to muster the energy to stick to a routine. Still, maintaining a routine is important, and when it's thrown off, time assumes a new meaning. </p><p><strong>Cure</strong>: Try to institute as many habitual practices as possible. You've likely heard to shower and dress every day, and those are important. Setting a regular sleep schedule and alarm is helpful. Stick to what you can but also try to find new ways of creating healthy habits along the way. It's amazing how quickly new routines become habitual as well. </p><h3>Sustenance</h3><p>Speaking of health, it appears that the most dangerous underlying condition for experiencing the worst COVID-19 symptoms, besides old age, is obesity. As the <em>NY Times</em> <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/16/us/coronavirus-cases-live-updates.html" target="_blank">reports</a>, "New studies point to obesity as the most significant risk factor, after only older age, for patients being hospitalized with Covid-19, the illness caused by the virus." Sales of processed foods, pretzels, and popcorn <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-21/americans-drop-kale-and-quinoa-to-lock-down-with-chips-and-oreos" target="_blank">are all up</a> while <a href="https://calmatters.org/california-divide/2020/04/california-farmers-coronavirus-food-supply-food-bank/" target="_blank">produce is rotting</a>. Overeating and eating processed, sugary foods both negatively impact our energy levels, creating a feeling of lethargy. </p><p><strong>Cure</strong>: <a href="https://bigthink.com/surprising-science/calorie-restriction" target="_self">Restricting calories</a> and <a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/intermittent-fasting" target="_self">closing your feeding window</a> are two important means for losing weight and gaining energy. We all need to keep our immune systems <a href="https://bigthink.com/surprising-science/coronavirus-immune-system" target="_self">as strong as possible</a> right now. As Dr. Drew Ramsey, who practices nutritional psychiatry, <a href="https://bigthink.com/videos/drew-ramsey-on-brain-health-and-nutrition" target="_self">says</a>, the food categories he recommends include leafy greens, colorful vegetables, and small fish, especially sardines and anchovies. He likes to see a "rainbow of colors" on every plate. And if you need a quick start to this process, one that will also help you deal with emotional eating, might I suggest the <a href="https://bigthink.com/personal-growth/scott-carney-the-wedge" target="_self">Potato Hack</a>? </p>
Signs at a bar thank medical workers and advertises liquor to go on April 15, 2020, in New York City.
Photo by David Dee Delgado/Getty Images<h3>Alcohol</h3><p>In the immediate aftermath of sheltering at home orders, <a href="https://www.vox.com/the-goods/2020/4/15/21219860/alcohol-delivery-coronavirus-liquor-store" target="_blank">alcohol sales</a> shot up 55 percent, with liquor and spirits up 75 percent, wine up 66 percent, and beer up 42 percent. Overall, online alcohol sales saw an increase of 243 percent. While that trend has slowed somewhat, we're still imbibing: One in three Americans <a href="https://www.alcohol.org/guides/work-from-home-drinking/" target="_blank">report</a> drinking more while in isolation. Since alcohol <a href="https://www.thrillist.com/health/nation/why-am-i-so-tired-all-the-time-fatigue-symptoms" target="_blank">destroys your REM cycles</a>, you won't get that deep and restful sleep your body needs. </p><p><strong>Cure</strong>: Don't drink. At least not as much, and not every day. An old friend of mine told me that in Jamaica, whenever her family or friends have a craving for food or alcohol, they drink tea. Amazingly, it seems to work, at least in my own experiences. Keeping yourself mentally occupied with a crossword puzzle or Sodoku (or a game of chess, if you have someone to play against) is a useful distraction. Exercise is also a wonderful way to get your mind focused on a healthier endeavor. </p><h3>Screen time</h3><p>Sure, we're all plugged in right now, but it doesn't mean that the blue light is doing us any good. Constantly checking the news is a double whammy: <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/31/technology/coronavirus-screen-time.html" target="_blank">the medium</a> <em>and</em> <a href="https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/annehelenpetersen/social-media-shaming-policing-behavior" target="_blank">the message</a> are both exhausting us. </p><p><strong>Cure</strong>: We're not giving up our screens. As the <em>NY Times</em> suggests, a "<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/13/parenting/manage-screen-time-coronavirus.html" target="_blank">three Cs</a>" approach could work. Sure, not everyone has Children, but Content and Context are applicable. Stay up to date with credible news sources. You just don't have to log on every hour, or even every day. Don't drop off, however. Civic engagement has never been more important. Just make sure to give your eyes a break. </p><h3>Bill Gates and the 5G Cartel</h3><p>Conspiracy theories are <a href="https://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/news/local/better-understanding-covid-19-and-your-mental-health/article_1fb65caf-207b-5abe-bab1-55421b992d7c.html" target="_blank">tiring</a>. The Bill Gates created 5G to depopulate the world so that survivors would have to be microchipped when getting his vaccine thread just exhausted me to write. The rabbit hole these theories lead down is doing no one any good. </p><p><strong>Cure</strong>: Not everything you don't agree with is part of the "mainstream" media. We (rightfully) applaud health care workers putting their lives at risk. Reporters might not be as close to the virus, but they're still putting their health on the line to keep us informed. A <a href="https://www.pewresearch.org/topics/news-sources/" target="_blank">tiny bit of research</a> does wonders for your mental health—and that of everyone on your social media feeds. Question everything, sure, including yourself. </p><p><span></span>--</p><p><em>Stay in touch with Derek on <a href="http://www.twitter.com/derekberes" target="_blank">Twitter</a> and <a href="https://www.facebook.com/DerekBeresdotcom" target="_blank">Facebook</a>. His next book is</em> "Hero's Dose: The Case For Psychedelics in Ritual and Therapy."</p>
Gyms and fitness centers are closed, but your living room is always open.
- Global lockdowns and business closures due to the coronavirus outbreak have left many searching for alternative ways to exercise.
- Beyond physical fitness, studies have shown that exercising also enhances creativity, relieves depression, and is overall great for the brain.
- These products will help you establish a personal workout center in your home and hopefully make self-isolation a little more bearable.
Playing and being creative shouldn't stop when you grow up.
- Growing up doesn't mean your life has to be all about work.
- Studies have shown that playing and being creative has numerous health benefits for adults of all ages.
- Simple exercises like drawing, finishing a puzzle, or taking breaks outdoors can have a positive impact on your life.