Alzheimer’s – Can we prevent it with Exercise?

It is said that memory is the mother of all wisdom, but every year after the age of 65 our chance of developing Alzheimer’s (or Dementia) doubles. Currently, there is no cure for Alzheimer’s however mounting research suggests it can be delayed and possibly even prevented, and the good news is that researchers believe that up to 80% of Alzheimer’s is preventable. Recent evidence has shown that the development of Dementia takes about 20 years to progress to a point where symptoms are noticeable. If we can implement early interventions, we may be able to maintain full brain function for longer and delay to onset of Dementia. In a study focused on how to prevent cognitive decline, it was found that the most important preventative factors were controlling blood pressure, maintaining healthy cholesterol, and maintaining physical activity.

A recent study showed that 1-year of brisk walking for 30 minutes a day was enough to dial back the ageing clock by 1-2 years, aiding to prevent the onset of Dementia. What we eat is also shown to play a large part in the impact of the brain and our cognitive function. The common Western diet is now considered to be high risk for the development of Dementia, in further studies the Mediterranean diet was shown to have the best results, reducing levels of betamyloid in the brain; levels of betamyloid are usually high for those with Alzheimer’s.

These benefits were found to be cumulative leading up to the onset of symptoms, so the message is clear: move, move often, and start today to reduce your risk of developing Dementia! If you would like some more information on specific programs at Absolute Balance to aid in prevention and treatment of Dementia, please visit our website or email


Luke Bell (B.Sc. – Sport & Exercise Science, B.Sc. – Exercise Science & Rehabilitation) Exercise Consultant – Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP)(ESSAM)