My Grandaddy has Alzheimer's. Let me just tell you, this disease SUCKS.
I am sorry, this is not a happy post, but like I said... I wanted to share it with you.
If you were around ages ago, I posted when my grandparents met Broxton for the first time... The joy and love... I tell you, when it comes to family, I am totally spoiled with a wonderful family that is full of love. Talk about being lucky... Until Alzheimer's comes in and messes things up.
My uncle (my grandaddy's brother) was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and recently passed... It was a very hard time for me... and it makes me hate it that disease that much more. (Several of my grandaddy's family has suffered with this horrible disease.) Imagine going to visit your grandparents and then one day you go... He is there physically but he has that look in his eyes where he has no clue who you are... Yep, that is how it is now... Most times he just sits there and watches, never speaking... just watching (and mom says now he sleeps mostly) It is heartbreaking and selfishly I go less and less now, trying to remember him the way he was.... (Don't judge, please)
I received an email saying that World Alzheimer's month is going on... and they had an article to share for brain health... I wanted to share the five tips, so here you go :
5 Brain-Health Tips from Bodybuilding Neurosurgeon
During World Alzheimer’s Month, Take Steps
to Care for Your Most Vital Organ
Osborn offers five tips to help everyone maintain brain health:
• Learn new skills. “Just as with other health concerns, brain health should be rooted in the prevention of disease,” he says. Alzheimer’s is a neurodegenerative disease, the causes of which, and the cure, are unknown. However, it’s widely thought that brain stimulation and activity can delay the onset of the disease. The acquisition of a new skill – whether it’s learning to play an instrument or taking up waterskiing – exercises the brain “muscle.”
• Commit to actual exercise. Everyone knows that exercise helps protect the heart, but not everyone knows that physical activity is also good for the brain. The brain is not a muscle, but it can be worked as muscle is worked during exercise, which forges new neuron pathways.
“Let’s face it, there is a component of learning in exercise,” Osborn says. “You cannot master the squat overnight; the brain has to change. Neuronal connections, or ‘synapses,’ are formed through very complex biophysical mechanisms. That takes time.”
• Don’t sweat stress. There is such a thing as good stress, including the acute bodily stress involved in strength training. Of course, there’s the bad stress, such as psychological stress associated with work or interpersonal relationships, and environmental stress, derived from pesticide-laden food – toxins. As always, you have a choice. You don’t have to accept mental stress in your life. Reconsider toxic relationships. Rethink how you handle pressure at work. Perhaps adopt a lunchtime exercise routine.
• Fuel a better body and brain. “I don’t believe in ‘diets,’ ” Osborn says. “Fit individuals were around for eons before the term existed, and I associate the term with temporary and, often, self-destructive behaviors.”
Again, it’s all connected. A healthy balance of food and activity will inevitably be good for the entire body: the heart, skeleton, muscles, brain, etc. Proper nutrition is a natural mood enhancer, and good health will inevitably improve self-esteem.
• Feed your head with smart drugs. Some pharmaceuticals may help enhance cerebral blood flow and increase concentration, including Hydergine, Deprenyl and Prozac, to name a few. Ask your doctor about these. There are also over-the-counter smart drugs to consider. Piracetam is one of the oldest and has been shown to have a variety of positive effects in patients with cognitive disorders like dementia and epilepsy. Vinpocetine has potent anti-inflammatory effects, and inflammation is a key component in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease, and others. You may also want to check out gingko biloba and pregnenolone.
About Dr. Brett Osborn
Brett Osborn is a New York University-trained, Board-Certified neurological surgeon with a secondary certification in Anti-Aging and Regenerative Medicine. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Neurological Surgery and of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine. He holds a CSCS honorarium from the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Dr. Osborn specializes in scientifically based nutrition and exercise as a means to achieve optimal health and preventing disease. He is the author “Get Serious, A Neurosurgeon’s Guide to Optimal Health and Fitness,”www.drbrettosborn.com.