To Your Health
February, 2021 (Vol. 15, Issue 02)
A Healthy Brain Can Reduce Your COVID Risk
By Editorial Staff
Age is no friend when it comes to COVID-19. The older you get, the higher your risk of complications from the novel coronavirus, pure and simple. In fact, according to the CDC, eight of 10 U.S. COVID deaths have been in adults ages 65 or older. Older adults also are more likely to be hospitalized when infected compared to younger age groups.
Can a healthy brain help reduce your COVID risk? If you're a senior, it definitely can. Here's how: Data documents more cases, hospitalizations and deaths among seniors with dementia compared to seniors without. Researchers reviewed the electronic health records of nearly 62 million U.S. adults and noted double the risk of contracting COVID-19 in people with dementia; and significantly worse outcomes (likelihood of hospitalization and/or death) among COVID sufferers with dementia compared to those with COVID, but no dementia. Findings appear in Alzheimer's & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer's Association.
OK, so let's talk about reducing your risk of suffering dementia, not only because of these statistics, but also because nearly 6 million American age 65 and older live with some form, including the most common: Alzheimer's disease. According to the Alzheimer's Association, “strong evidence” supports lifestyle changes that can reduce dementia risk, such as regular cardiovascular activity, not smoking, continual learning, adequate sleep, social engagement and perhaps the most important when it comes to brain health: challenging your mind (crossword puzzles, board games, new hobbies, etc.). Click here to learn more.