Reducing Your Risk of Dementia

The Wellbeing Doctor

I'm an NHS Clinical Psychologist (in training) sharing practical evidence-based ideas for looking after your mental and physical health.

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Here are a few ideas of how you can protect your brain using lifestyle factors which have been shown to affect our risk of developing dementia:⁠⠀
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🍎Eat the rainbow – a Mediterranean diet seems to be the front-runner when it comes to brain boosting foods. So make sure you load up on colourful fruit and veg (partcularly leafy greens and berries), extra virgin olive oil and fish and ditch the processed foods for a happy brain!⁠⠀
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🍷 Watch the booze – Excessive alcohol consumption is a risk factor so make sure to reduce your intake or try swapping your tipple for a single glass of anti-oxidant filled, good-quality red wine with dinner. Cheers!⁠⠀
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💪Keep moving – There’s a well known link between physical inactivity and cognitive decline. Movement increases blood flow to the brain and reduces inflammation so try to find something active which you enjoy and do it regularly. ⁠⠀
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💤 Get some sleep – We’ve all experienced how just one night of broken sleep can affect our ability to think clearly or remember things the next day so make sure you protect your brain in the long term by giving it time to repair.⠀
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⚽️ Protect your head – brain injuries can increase your risk so try to protect yourself wherever possible. This includes wearing a helmet when cycling and avoiding headers during football. ⁠⠀
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🚬 Go smoke-free – Quitting smoking can reduce your risk of cognitive decline to a similar level to those who have never smoked – so definitely worth doing!⁠⠀
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🤯 Look after your mental health – long term stress and depression have been linked to our likelihood of developing dementia. As always, don’t be afraid to get support if you’re struggling with your mental health. ⁠⠀
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📚 Stimulate your brain – Education and learning has been shown to be protective against cognitive decline so why not try something new, such as playing an musical instrument? Also, engaging in cognitively challenging tasks such as puzzles or even putting together furniture can be beneficial.⁠⠀

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The Wellbeing Doctor

I'm an NHS Clinical Psychologist (in training) sharing practical evidence-based ideas for looking after your mental and physical health.

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