Keep On Movin’: Physical Activity In Dementia

It has been recognised for over 60 years that regular physical activity provides health benefits. Our bodies are designed to be stimulated by physical exertion. Fitness is associated with lower all-cause mortality, along with improved sleep, quality of life, social life and reduced stress. On the other hand, physical inactivity predicts obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, mental health issues, reduced quality of life and overall mortality. The evidence is clear: we need to get moving. In addition to health outcomes, cognition and physical activity are intrinsically linked. This is increasingly true within the senior population. More physically active older adults show less cognitive decline than those who are not active. Older adults participating in physical activity programs often demonstrate improvements in their cognitive abilities – particularly with attention and executive function. In frailer older adults with many health problems, physical activity interventions

Source: Keep On Movin’: Physical Activity In Dementia

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Waving the red flag: The search for early markers of Alzheimer’s Disease

“How can a three-pound mass of jelly that you can hold in your palm imagine angels, contemplate the meaning of infinity, and even question its own place in the cosmos?” This eloquent quote by V.S. Ramachandran expresses the feelings of many of the people around the world who are celebrated Brain Awareness Week (#BAW2016), which occurs annually in March. This global campaign strives to inform the public about the marvels science has discovered about the brain and the benefits this research holds for all of us. Alongside enlightening discoveries about how the brain shapes our understanding of the world, researchers use various methods to improve diagnostics, and locate the causes and develop cures to brain diseases. Alzheimer’s disease (AD), a neurodegenerative disorder characterised by its notable memory impairment, has become a beacon for brain research. The need for more research is further evident, as patient numbers are set to increase from 44 million people living with AD today to

Source: Waving the red flag: The search for early markers of Alzheimer’s Disease

Looking to the future: What can smartphones tell us about gait?

The 21st of October 2015 was the day Doc Brown and Marty McFly from the famous movie franchise ‘Back to the Future’ were supposed to arrive in the future, all the way from 1985. This day was supposed to be ripe with flying cars, hoverboards and self-drying jackets. They would have found it sadly lacking (though a version of hoverboards seem to be an emerging reality, albeit a dangerous one). However, Nike strived to have one such thing become a reality for this highly anticipated day: the first self-tying sneakers. The significance of this design was not lost upon Michael J. Fox, the man behind Marty McFly who has developed Parkinson’s Disease (PD) since filming the series. As show in the video below, Nike presented the sneakers to Fox, with a note that all proceeds from the sale of these limited edition Nike Mags would go towards PD research. But have you thought about what is going on when Michael J. Fox puts those sneakers on the ground and begins to walk? And what his walk, and the

Source: Looking to the future: What can smartphones tell us about gait?