The Impact of Exercise on Alzheimer’s Disease

Posted by Hilary Young on June 19, 2013

The Impact of Exercise on Alzheimer’s Disease

A group of seven researchers from The University of Washington’s Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center found that “regular exercise is associated with a delay in onset of dementia and Alzheimer disease, further supporting its value for elderly persons.” Over 1500 people over the age of 65 participated in the study, which took place at Group Health Cooperative in Seattle, Washington. The study found that seniors who work out at least 3 times a week, reduced their risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and dementia by 35 percent. Here in the United States, someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s every 68 seconds. If you’re interested in reducing your risk of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia, try integrating the following exercises into your daily routine. If you can’t be active daily, then at least aim for 3 times a week--it’s proven to make a big difference!   Walking. Suburban sprawl has made it easy to just hop in a car and drive to get whatever you may need. But choosing to walk instead of taking the car can have major health benefits. In addition to keeping your mind sharp, 150 minutes of moderate-intensity walking a week can help manage stress and prevent heart disease. Grab a friend or two to make your walks more social and give you the extra push that you need to get out there and get walking!   Swimming. Swimming puts your core muscles, arms, and legs to work! The best part is that it’s low-impact so you protect your joints from strain because there is no ground impact when you swim. If you prefer to work out alone, swimming laps is a great option for you. And if you’re more comfortable working out in groups, look into local water aerobics classes, which can burn up to 500 calories!   Bicycling. Whether on a stationary bike in the gym, or a bicycle on the street, cycling is a great low-impact exercise for people of all-ages. Bicycling keeps joints flexible, while also building strength, and can even reduce arthritis pain. And like walking, if you can find a way to trade in a car ride for a bike ride a few times, it’s an easy lifestyle change with added benefits!


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