The Bad News: Alzheimer’s and Dementia on the Rise

Do you have a family member suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease? Do you worry about your brain health or that you have the genetic tendencies for these conditions? The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that 6.9 million Americans aged 65 or older have Alzheimer’s, and this disease has become the fifth leading cause of death in Americans 65 and older. Current pharmaceuticals offer no hope for halting or reversing this condition.

Alzheimer’s has been labeled “diabetes of the brain” and is a result of inflammation in the brain. Insulin is known to regulate glucose metabolism, support cognition, enhance the outgrowth of neurons, and perform other important functions in the brain. Insulin resistance inside the brain is accompanied by inflammation and oxidative damage. Plaque forms in the brain, and brain cells begin to die. This loss of brain cells results in cognitive decline, memory loss, and eventually death.

“Memory loss is not an inevitable part of aging.​”

Risk Factors for Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Here are some of the top risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia:

  • Age
  • Lifestyle
  • Genetics
  • Isolation
  • Metabolic dysfunction
  • Insufficient oxygen to the brain
  • Toxicity
  • Nutrient deficiencies
  • Hormones
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)

The Good News about Brain Health

The good news is that the majority of the Alzheimer’s and dementia risk factors are controllable, and Alzheimer’s disease may be prevented or slowed by adopting a healthy lifestyle and minimizing risk factors. Even if you or a loved one show signs of memory loss, adopting the following healthy habits may maintain your brain health and could slow or possibly reverse the signs of dementia and full-blown Alzheimer’s disease.

20 Tips to Maintain Your Brain Health

  1. Feed your brain REAL FOOD – what you see in the grocery store’s perimeter in the meat, fish, and produce sections.
  2. Eat the rainbow daily. Cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts) detoxify. Bright-colored fruits and vegetables add anti-oxidants and polyphenols, which balance excess free radicals and slow cellular aging. Green leafy vegetables feed your gut microbiome and, ultimately, your brain.
  3. Add in healthy carbohydrates in the form of fruits and vegetables, including root vegetables. Minimize or eliminate processed foods and grains.
  4. Eat organic produce whenever possible, especially for those items on the Environmental Working Group’s “Dirty Dozen” list.
  5. Add in healthy fat from extra virgin olive oil, avocados/avocado oil, nuts, seeds, and fatty fish (sardines, mackerel, anchovies, herring, wild-caught salmon).
  6. Avoid highly processed vegetable oils from seeds or beans, such as soybean oil, canola oil, safflower oil, and sunflower oil.
  7. Consume plenty of high-quality (grass-fed and organic when possible) proteins.
  8. Avoid sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners.
  9. Minimize or avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  10. Drink at least 70 ounces of pure water daily from glass or stainless steel. Plastic bottles can release toxic chemicals into the water.
  11. Add more healthy movement and regular exercise. Moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise and strengthening exercises are the most beneficial.
  12. Limit exposure to radiation by keeping your cell phone away from your body as much as possible and turning it off or to airplane mode at night.
  13. Take inventory of your toxin exposure and work with a functional medicine practitioner to detoxify from chemicals and possibly heavy metals.
  14. Switch out personal hygiene and household cleaning products for non-toxic alternatives. For suggestions, visit the Environmental Working Group (
  15. Add in regular social times to connect with friends and family.
  16. Add in relaxation and stress reduction activities such as time in nature, meditation, and yoga.
  17. Adopt a habit of lifelong learning.
  18. Get 8 hours of restful sleep – turn off electronic devices at least 2 hours before bed, establish a relaxing evening rhythm to prepare for sleep, and catch the “sleep bus” when it comes around the first time and your natural levels of melatonin are at their highest (usually between 9 and 9:30 pm). People who identify as “night owls” do not go to bed when the sleep bus rolls around, so their cortisol levels start to rise, giving them a second wind and making it more difficult to fall asleep.
  19. Add in high-quality foundational supplements: multi-vitamin/mineral complex, activated B vitamins, Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil with at least 1000 mg of EPA and DHA combined), magnesium glycinate, vitamin D with K2
  20. Finally, PROGRESS OVER PERFECTION! Every small step toward brain health is a step in the right direction, and small steps add up over time.

Take Steps Today To Maintain Your Brain Health

Remember that there is hope for a healthy future without Alzheimer’s or dementia. Memory loss is not an inevitable part of aging. Our brains have an incredible ability to heal and regenerate when we remove toxins and give them the proper nutrition and support that they need to function!

As a health and life coach, Kay can help you with an individualized plan to reach your health goals and maintain your brain health.

Contact Kay for a complimentary consultation. Kay makes it easy to begin implementing lifestyle changes. She will meet you where you are and partner with you to help you chart a healthy course for a more enjoyable life and a brighter future.