Diet, stress, exercise and exposure to chemicals may impact your chances of getting Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases, a new report by two environmental health advocacy organizations has found. The report - by Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility and the Science and Environmental Health Network - is just in time for National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month this month. The key to reducing your risk for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's seems to be in leading a nutrition-conscious, active lifestyle. Here are some more tips:
¢ Avoid saturated and trans fats, and fill your diet with fresh fruits and veggies. Get plenty of omega-3s from eating fish regularly, but limit your consumption of fish that tend to be high in mercury (swordfish, king mackerel, and albacore and fresh tuna).
¢ Go ahead, have a glass. Red wine - as well as green tea - has important antioxidants. Caffeine may also reduce your risk of Parkinson's.
¢ Limit your exposure to lead and pesticides. They are known to increase the risk of Alzheimer's and diabetes, which also comes with a risk of dementia.
¢ Stay socially and physically active, and exercise your brain regularly with crossword puzzles, word games, chess and other activities that require critical thinking. These measures reduce the risk of cognitive decline as you age.