Mark A. Mahoney

The Promise Garden is planted In honor of participants loved ones affected by Alzheimer's. This year's walk is set for Nov. 20 at FSU.

An estimated 6.2 million Americans age 65 and older are living with Alzheimer’s dementia in 2021. Seventy-two percent are age 75 or older. One in nine people age 65 and older (11.3{44affb6c5789133b77de981cb308c1480316fee51f5fd5f1575b130f48379a33}) has Alzheimer’s dementia. Almost two-thirds of Americans with Alzheimer’s are women.

By 2050, the number of people age 65 and older with Alzheimer’s dementia may grow to a projected 12.7 million, barring the development of medical breakthroughs to prevent, slow or cure Alzheimer’s disease.

Dementia:Tallahassee returns to in-person Walk to End Alzheimer’s on Nov. 20

Exercise:Low-impact exercise a tool for managing osteoarthritis, an issue for aging population

In my May 18 2021 column in the Tallahassee Democrat, I focused on lifestyle choices with an emphasis on diet. As a follow-up to this past Saturday’s Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Tallahassee today’s column focuses on the impact that positive lifestyle changes can have on brain health.  

The Alzheimer’s Association has compiled simple steps to follow to prevent cognitive decline and reduce the risk of dementia.

Walkers carry promise flowers to signify the reasons they walk in the Walk to End Alzheimer's, set for Nov. 20, 2021 at FSU.

Lifestyle changes: Being proactive

A past study in Alzheimer’s and Dementia: the Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association concluded that people can reduce their risk of cognitive decline and dementia by making positive lifestyle changes.

1. Avoid brain injury 

Wear a helmet when riding a bike or playing contact sports, a seatbelt in the car and work to prevent falls.