The Rise in Alzheimer’s

 In Health, pensioners

Alzheimer’s – an illness or a state? I have watched people die with it and I doubt few people over 70 don’t worry over it now and again. It came to mind as I listened to a podcast on The Retirement Cafe website, managed by MFP, a firm of financial advisors in Mudeford. In this, Dr. Ben Hicks discussed how to approach and manage the illness. Have a listen if you are also interested in the rise in Alzheimer’s, a form of dementia.

Exercise

I breathed a sigh of relief when his advice and my lifestyle were in accord. Exercise, it seems, is good. Phew! How much exercise and how to measure its impact is another question altogether. The science suggests that exercise flushes blood through the brain. I noted how my late friend with the illness had poor balance. The worst situation for him was to walk up or down a slight slope. He also smiled at me when I tied my shoelaces. This was because I stood on one leg and lifted the other to tie the lace. He was always amazed. Good balance and fitness go hand in hand.

The Test

The rise in Alzheimer’s prompts me to conduct a regular test. On a nearby footpath between two houses, two metal barriers are offset to stop cyclists. The test, for me, is to cycle through these without touching them or putting a foot down. Cycling through the barriers is also two fingers to the bureaucrat who thought that such a barrier, an obstruction to everybody, was ever necessary. Failing to negotiate the test will only be a disaster if I also fail a sudoku that week.

Research Failure

The rise in Azheimer’s lead to a couple of decades of intense research in the UK by big pharma. This consumed a vast sum of money but totally failed, both to find a cure or any form of treatment. Even failure helps, of course, as it informs us what does not work. The good news is that 83% of people don’t experience the condition. So, keep fit. Set a target of a one mile walk in 15 minutes. A level route would be Mudeford Quay (the barrier by the play area) and along the front to the end of the sea wall after Friars Cliff. What a walk, the joy of the sea and the gulls calling. The Alzheimer’s test; don’t fall over a dog!

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