Physical Exercise and Cognitive Decline

News / Resources for Families / Resources for Seniors

When it comes to healthy aging, a little exercise goes a long way – especially when it comes to Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

Experts with the Alzheimer’s Society, analyzed data from 16 studies into exercise and dementia. They found that regular exercise can reduce the risk of developing dementia by about 28%. For Alzheimer’s disease specifically, the risk was reduced by 45%.

“This kind of research is very important” said Austin Blilie, Chief Operating Officer at Tudor Oaks Home Care’s parent organization, ABHM.  “We’re hopeful that one day there will be a cure for dementia, but until then we need to do whatever we can to prevent it.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adults aged 65 should:

  • Try to be physical active every day – even it it’s just light activity
  • Do activities that improve strength, balance and flexibility at least 2 days a week
  • Aim for 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity a week – or. combination of both
  • Reduce time spent sitting or lying down and break up long periods of not moving with some type of activity

To get the heart pumping, experts recommend:

  • Mowing the lawn
  • Raking leaves
  • Dancing
  • Swimming
  • Walking
  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Yoga
  • Water aerobics

To improve strength and balance, they suggest:

  • Lifting weights
  • Squats
  • Working with resistance bands
  • Push-ups and sit-ups
  • Digging in a garden
  • Yoga

“At Tudor Oaks Home Care, we encourage our clients to be as active as possible – even those with limited mobility – because it will help them maintain their independence for as long as possible,” he said. “Whether it’s a bike ride, a brisk walk around the block or just keeping up with household chores, exercise can prevent or delay many of the health problems that cause them to become dependent on others.”

To learn more about exercise guidelines and suggestions for seniors, click here to visit the website for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.