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There are many messages about the benefits of looking after our bodies, but what about our brains?
Dementia Australia is this week reminding all Australians ‘Your Brain Matters’ as part of Brain Awareness Week March 12 to 18 – a global campaign to increase public awareness around the benefits of maintaining a healthy brain, and potentially reducing the risk of developing conditions such as dementia.
Dementia Australia Medical Advisor Professor Michael Woodward said it’s never too late to look after our most important health asset, reminding all Australians to be proactive when it comes to brain health.
“There are currently 425,000 Australians living with dementia, and without a medical breakthrough this number is expected to increase to over one million people by 2056,” Professor Woodward said.
“There is a considerable amount of research that reiterates, looking after your brain, at any age, could improve your current health and significantly reduce the risk of developing dementia in the future.”
To coincide with Brain Health Awareness Week, Dementia Australia highlights the ‘Your Brian Matters’ initiative to emphasise how preventative health measures can benefit your brain and overall health.
The five steps to maximise your brain health include:
Step 1: Look after your heart. What’s good for your heart is good for your brain. The risk of developing dementia appears to increase as a result of conditions that affect the heart.
Step 2: Do some kind of physical activity. Physical activity increases blood flow to the brain, stimulates the growth of brain cells and the connection between them.
Step 3: Mentally challenge your brain. Mental exercise may also protect against accumulation of damaging proteins found in the brain of a person living with Alzheimer’s.
Step 4: Follow a healthy diet. Your brain needs the right nutrients to function properly.
Step 5: Enjoy social activity. Social interaction with people whose company you enjoy can help to look after the health of your brain.
Dementia Australia is the national peak body for people, of all ages, living with all forms of dementia, their families and carers. It provides advocacy, support services, education and information. An estimated 425,000 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than 1.1 million by 2056. Dementia Australia’s services are supported by the Australian Government.
National Dementia Helpline 1800 100 500
Interpreter service available
(The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)
Dementia is a National Health Priority Area
Media contact: Anna Townend 0435 532 214
When talking or writing about dementia please refer to Dementia-Friendly Language Guidelines.
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