Four Most Valuable [4MV] Weekly Tips For Living Longer Better | Newsletter

4MV #208 Will you develop dementia in the next 14 years ✔ 11 risk factors

Published 8 months ago • 9 min read


All strength to Ukraine 🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦

Golden retrievers - hypersocial.

They appear absurdly delighted to meet any human coming their way, and scientists now know why. Golden retriever-types have genetic differences from other dogs. They share similarities with humans in the genome associated with hypersociability in people!

The depth of emotional attachment dogs have towards humans often brings out the best in people. I see this at the dog park where many owners interact who would be unlikely to interact in another setting, for example, we dachshund owners.

Additionally, having a dog is a big incentive to be more active, even if it’s just your dog insisting on a daily walk.

It is counterintuitive, but our skin doesn't just reflect our health. It influences it for better or worse - see item #2.

The 14-year predictions of dementia by British researchers identified 11 high-risk factors - several you can change. See item #1.

⭑ You can reduce the likelihood of dementia ✔ Check these high risk factors
⭑ Our skin is a large body organ - unhealthy skin creates an unhealthy body ✔
⭑ Our personality is both stable and changing as we age ✔ Embrace it
⭑ Relax and loosen your hips with this universally beneficial stretch ✔


01 The 11 Strongest Risk Factors for Dementia

Targeting risk factors can reduce your likelihood of developing dementia, but what are the most critical risk factors to address?

Good news. Recent research found lifestyle choices were among the leading risk factors - and hence in your control. The study group was large - 224,000 individuals aged 50 to 73 (part of a larger long-term British public health study).

The researchers compiled a list of 28 known factors associated with dementia risk and identified the strongest predictors, resulting in 11 predictive factors.

These factors are age, education, history of diabetes, history of depression, history of stroke, parental history of dementia, levels of deprivation, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, living alone, and being male.

Among these factors are several over which we can exercise control (and actually, I was surprised that sleep quality did not make the list).

It’s important to note that this study establishes correlations between these factors and dementia risk but does not prove causation. For example, an extrovert's idea of "living alone" may be an introvert's annoyance with too many people in their lives.

What this means for you: I assume "being male" means being born biologically male, so we can't change that one, nor our age or parents. However, we can address the modifiable factors, particularly diabetes, depression, high blood pressure, and "living alone" to reduce the risk of dementia.

Let's guess: What is the one single thing that can help mediate all of these modifiable factors?

⇒ Regular physical exercise as part of your daily routine. You got it.

Walk your dog, take a walk to the shops, do a few extra laps of the mall, walk up your stairs a few more times every day, get out into the wind and the sun and the rain. Exercise your brain - learn a language with Duolingo, start chatting with ChatGPT about things that fascinate you, or help at a local charity.

We all owe it to ourselves to reduce the risk of developing dementia. Make it a part of your lifestyle; it’s easier to maintain that way. And according to the study, the likelihood of your efforts being rewarded is high.

PS while "being male" is noted as a high-risk factor, it depends, because there are several types of dementia and females are more prone to some types than males.

Related post: How Bananas Benefit Your Bones - And Brain


02 How Your Skin Health Affects Your Inner Health

How youthful you appear is an impressively accurate reflection of your inner health. According to a study conducted in 1982, men perceived as looking significantly older than their actual age at the beginning of the study, 20 years prior, were more likely to have died.

Recent research further supports this finding, revealing that 99% of patients deemed to look at least 10 years older than their chronological age had underlying health issues.

Interestingly, skin health can predict various seemingly unrelated factors, including bone density, the risk of developing neurodegenerative diseases, and cardiovascular mortality.

However, as the evidence accumulates, it has led to an unexpected twist in the narrative. Is the condition of our skin merely a reflection of the damage we have accumulated over time, or is there a more complex relationship at play?

⇒ Could healthy skin contribute to overall well-being, while unhealthy skin exacerbates health problems?

The answer, as scientists are now finding, is yes - the condition of our skin can exacerbate existing health problems.

I immediately thought of my two operations for melanoma - but I can’t change now what I did to my skin in my younger life.

What this means for you: The new understanding is that skin health is not just a consequence of aging but can actively contribute to the development of age-related diseases, including low bone density and the risk of developing diseases like diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

These days, I drink water more regularly, seek more shade, and don't go to the dog park without sunscreen if the UV Index is greater than 4.

Higher vitamin C and linoleic acid intakes are also associated with better skin condition. I add cold-pressed flaxseed to my olive oil bottle for linoleic acid, or you can eat more rice and pulses.

Of course, avoiding smoking, limiting alcohol consumption, and maintaining a healthy weight are the ground rules for good skin health.

And, ask your doctor specifically to check your skin at each checkup. Get their personalised recommendation for looking after your skin health.

Related: ​​The Surprising Benefits of Black Tea Daily

@Medium - Follow me on Medium ↗, covering ⭑food, ⭑brain, ⭑body, ⭑life


03 Your Personality Changes as You Age - Take Advantage

According to research, our personality changes in various ways as we age; perhaps it is the nurturing of ourselves that moulds these changes.

Mainly, people in their 60s reported higher levels of identity certainty and confident power compared to their 20s and 40s, with variations based on gender and social class.

Other studies found an increase in agreeableness and a decline in extraversion. I see this, but sometimes also the opposite!

And women’s personalities have been found to significantly change from college to midlife, more so than men.

⇒ Overall, these studies indicate that personality transformations occur in complex ways during adulthood, with some traits remaining stable while others evolve.

Personally, I think that it also depends on the circumstances. I remember being amazed at a 45-year school reunion to see each of us take on the role and personality style that we had at school, despite prime ministers, captains of industry and high court judges among us.

What this means for you: Embrace healthy personality changes.

  • Recognise that personality changes are a natural part of aging.
  • Embrace and adapt to these transformations by exploring activities that cater to your changing preferences.
  • Focus on deeper connections with loved ones and engage in more introspective hobbies.
  • Navigate new life stages with flexibility and resilience by embracing change.
  • Take advantage of the knowledge that your personality will continue to evolve.
  • Continue pursuing personal growth, learning, and self-improvement.
  • Engage in activities like reading, taking classes, learning new skills, or volunteering.
  • Open up opportunities for ongoing personal development that complement your evolving strengths and weaknesses, leading to a more fulfilling and meaningful life.

In other words - live and learn, and use the learning to take no regrets with you.

Related: Why Using An Electric Toothbrush is Important For Longevity


04 An Everyday Stretch To Improve Mobility

Our exercise of the week is... a universally beneficial stretch.

​"I professionally stretch people for a living - and this is the best stretch in my arsenal", says Hayley Lubow, racker and training leader at Racked Stretch.

Hayley recommends the "Closed Figure 4 Hip Stretch" as the one that everyone feels instantly better by doing. It helps relieve lower back tension whether at home, at your desk job, or on a long flight.

It involves the entirety of the hip area—including the joints and muscles—and even starts to get into the connected muscle groups like the hamstrings.

This stretch is one you see a lot after gym classes, where you put one ankle up on the raised knee of your other leg, "thread the needle", and pull back. Doing this type of stretch daily, even while you sit, improves your mobility.

⇒ I certainly did this one after every gym session, and now at home since I have my garage set up nicely.

What this means for you: The great thing about this stretch is that it can be easily modified. Meaning, no matter how tight, flexible, non-flexible, or sore you are, it's possible to modify the stretch to suit. You can also do it from anywhere.

See the video here, it's very instructive.

If you're able to lie down:

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Bend your right knee at a right angle and place your right ankle over your left knee, keeping your foot flexed.
  3. Interlace hands under the left thigh and pull the left thigh with the right ankle towards your chest. If your back is rounding and not flat on the floor, use a stretch rope or towel under the thigh for better leverage and comfort.
  4. Slowly release your legs while maintaining the shape - keeping your grip.
  5. Repeat a few more times for an effective stretch.

If you're seated:

  1. Sit in a good posture on your chair, with both feet on the ground.
  2. Lift your right leg and place your right ankle on your left thigh, just above the knee. You may use your right hand to support your raised knee gently.
  3. Slowly lean forward with a straight back.
  4. Pause briefly when you feel a stretch, then sit back up slowly.
  5. Do this four to five times, then switch sides.

Do this stretch a few times a day and you'll notice how much less tight you feel after a couple of weeks.

Related: Are You Ab-Wheel Rolling To Back Pain? I Was — Not Now

Thanks for reading!

P.S. If you are not yet subscribed to my free exercise app, try now ↓↓↓ Free forever. Opt-out any time. Opt-in by CLICKING HERE PLEASE SEND ME THE EXERCISES. NOTE: YOU ONLY NEED TO SUBSCRIBE ONE TIME.

>> My Latest Blog Post: Energise Your Golden Years: Boosting Your Desire to Exercise with Gut-Healthy Foods

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Resources for you:

Measuring Your Waist Will Tell You If You Are On Your Way To Diabetes

Thanks To Magic 3 This Meditation I Learnt in Indonesia Calms Me Before Bed

How Many Pistachios Should I Eat For Sleep and When?

How To Find Purpose In Your Life Without Feeling Like You Are Endlessly Chasing Your Tail

The Surprising Way Hip Flexors Pull You Down Into An Elderly Stoop And ​Shuffle, And How To Avoid It

This One Exercise Will Reshape Your Body And Your Brain, If You’re Game

​​The Exact Slow Pace You Must Run and Cycle To Max Fat-Burning​​

Dizziness And Cataracts - Is There A Link?

All Exercise Improves Your Mood - Five Theories Why And Six Steps To Get Started

How To Get The Health Benefits Of Black Tea - Even If You Don't Like Drinking It

Drink This Many Cups Of Coffee Daily For Better Health

​​​How Avoiding A High Viral Load Can Save Your Life - Coronavirus

Shining Light On Infrared Therapy - It Helped Unlock My Shoulder

How To Go From On-knee to Full Pushups, and Reap The Benefits

Skipping Breakfast May Make You More Likely To Develop Diabetes - Research

I Started Trail Running At 70. Besides Being Bitten By A Dog I Love It

Walking Backwards Benefits So Much More Than Your Knees

This One Exercise Will Reshape Your Body And Your Brain, If You’re Game

How To Walk Better (And Undo The Damage Of Treadmills)

How To Keep Your Weight Off With Daily Walks — 5 Fun Level-ups That Everyone Can Do

Why I recommend Claire Kowalchik's "Running for Women"

Struggling to Make Running Gains? The Secret to Building your Stamina is to Not Be Confused by The Experts.

Brain Health Is Boosted By Eating Less, Often — Here’s How To Start

Holy Mackerel! Researchers Confirm Walnuts Help Your Muscles Stay Stronger Helping Live Longer

As You Age Pistachios Can Help You Sleep Better

The Countdown - How To Start Exercising When You Can't Get Started

Why Walnuts Lower Heart Disease and Help You Sleep Better

How To Sleep Better And Recover Like Elite Soccer Players

Forget Beetroot Juice, Eat More Vegetables For Nitrate Potency And Longer Life

Avoid Ankle Injuries And Gain Balance Better With These Four Everyday Simple Exercises

Rebuilding Your Fast-twitch Muscles Doesn’t Require Fast Movements. Rebuild Your Balance in 2 Minutes Daily

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Four Most Valuable [4MV] Weekly Tips For Living Longer Better | Newsletter

​"I empower mid-life men and women to make the choice to live as actively and as independently as they can, for as long as they can", Walter Adamson Get access to my weekly research that I don’t share elsewhere. “My wife and I both read your articles each week, and I have to say there is so much confusing data out there, but yours is a great source, well researched, scientific and always relevant.” — Steve Ridgway, subscriber.

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