Some of the strongest evidence about maintaining your brain links brain health to heart health.  Even though you can’t feel your brain working, it’s one of the most active organs in your body – your heart pumps about 20 percent of your blood to your brain, where billions of cells use about 20 percent of the blood’s oxygen and fuel.

If your heart isn’t pumping well — or if your brain’s blood vessels are damaged — your brain cells have trouble getting all the nutrients, energy and oxygen they need. Any condition that damages your heart or blood vessels can affect your brain’s blood supply.

How you can take brain health to heart!

  1. Adopt a long-term, heart-healthy ‘food lifestyle’,-  eating in moderation rather than a short-term diet. A long-term research study of 1,500 adults found that those who were obese in middle age were twice as likely to develop dementia in later life. Those who also had high cholesterol and high blood pressure had six times the risk of dementia.
  2. Reduce your intake of fat and cholesterol – studies have shown that high intake of saturated fat and cholesterol can result in high cholesterol levels which if left untreated can cause atherosclerosis (thickening of artery walls) and affect the blood supply to the brain,. This increases the risk of heart disease, stroke and dementia. High cholesterol levels may also increase the production of plaques on the brain that are thought to cause Alzheimer’s disease. Use mono and polyunsaturated fats, such as olive oil, for example. Try baking or grilling food instead of frying. Get your cholesterol levels checked.
  3. Try to incorporate exercise into your daily lifestyle – walking or other moderate exercise for 30 minutes each day gets the body moving and the heart pumping. Many research studies have shown that people who exercise regularly are, on average, less likely to develop dementia. They are also more likely to have better cognitive function than those who don’t exercise. This has been found for people at middle age and also old age. Increased brain blood flow, healthier brain cells and reduced cardiovascular risk may all contribute to physical activity’s effects.
  4. Don’t smoke – smoking interferes with blood flow and oxygen to the brain and is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Research studies consistently show that those who smoke have, on average, a higher risk of developing dementia compared to non-smokers. A review of the research concluded that smokers have nearly an 80% higher dementia risk The review also concluded that former smokers do not have an increased risk of dementia compared to those who have never smoked.  So there is evidence that quitting can bring down the increase in the risk of dementia associated with smoking.

https://yourbrainmatters.org.au/brain_health/evidence

Accessing home care – the ‘how to’

April 4, 2022

Scenario Exercises in our Residential Homes and Community Centres

February 10, 2022

Aida Keeps Her Independence at 82

February 2, 2022

Keeping Safe in a COVID-19 World

February 2, 2022

Children Share Words of Care and Comfort

February 2, 2022

Tips for Keeping Your Mind Active

February 2, 2022

Pets Providing Companionship for SCCWA Residents and Clients

February 2, 2022

Volunteers Thanked for Their Continued Efforts

February 2, 2022

Fishing outing a huge success for home care client Robert

January 21, 2022

Jill’s secret to a long and healthy life

January 21, 2022

Kevin brings happiness and joy to home care clients

January 21, 2022

Together we can ensure no one faces dementia alone

September 21, 2021

Raising a cuppa at Southern Cross Care WA

June 1, 2018

Football gives Stephen ‘a new lease of life’

May 21, 2018

Tony Quinlan Respite Centre open day highlights benefits of respite care

May 17, 2018

How Harry found his calling through volunteering

May 14, 2018

Southern Cross Care salutes our Anzac heroes

April 30, 2018

What to consider when choosing a retirement village

March 1, 2018

What’s good for your heart is good for your head!

February 20, 2018

Baby, its hot out there!

February 20, 2018

Jeremiah Donovan House residents impart wisdom after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine

March 12, 2021

Victoria Park Nursing Home Residents are treated like family

November 18, 2020

SCC celebrates National Volunteer Week

May 25, 2020

Stay healthy this summer

January 10, 2020

SCC staff shine at WA Mental Health Awards

December 20, 2019

Easy Christmas Pudding

December 17, 2019

SCC celebrates volunteers’ contributions

December 16, 2019

Alma’s holiday dream comes true

October 25, 2019

Health and Wellness events encourage residents to live and age well

October 11, 2019

Living with dementia series: what dementia feels like

September 26, 2019