Daily Archives: December 21, 2010

Do You Know Your Family Health History?

It is so vitally important to know and be familiar with your family health history. Not only should we all know our family health history, but it is crucial to share this information with your doctor and health care professionals. Think of it as filling in all the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. When the puzzle is complete, then you have the whole picture. The same applies to your health-if you have all the available

information, then it’s like having all the pieces of the puzzle!  So, if you didn’t interview  your relatives and obtain your family  health history during 2010 then don’t panic-just DO IT NOW!  While you are gathering all the health information, why not get a video camera and record an oral history with a  family tree and lineage at the same time?

Can you believe that in only 11 days it is  New Year’s Day 2011?  With that in mind, I have an important task for all of you. Since we gather together with our families during the holiday season, now is an excellent time to get your family health history. Make it a fun family activity on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year‘s Eve, or New Year’s Day! That is 4 separate occasions to complete the assignment. I honestly can’t think of a more important New Year’s Resolution that can affect your new year and your life! We are all well  aware that we should eat better, exercise more, exercise our brains, and make time just for us. But in order to maximize the benefits of all our good habits, we must know our family histories!

Do you have a family history of Alzheimer’s Disease, dementia, heart disease, stroke, Parkinson’s Disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, kidney disease, autoimmune disorders, cancer, thyroid disease,  or any other chronic disease? Did you  know that with many of these diseases you have an increased risk for developing memory problems, Alzheimer’s Disease, dementia,  and other cognitive deficits?

By doing a little research into your genetic heritage, you have the ability to map out a more healthy lifestyle and make positive changes. It’s never too late to begin positive lifestyle choices whether you’re a senior, a baby boomer, in your 40’s or 30’s, 20’s  in college, or even in high school. Just for fun, find out the age of  your oldest living blood relative. By the way, mine was either 114, 115, or 116. We can’t pin down her exact birth year but are within just a couple. I find that truly amazing! She was living during the Civil War and  arrived in America a few years later with her husband.  My great-great grandmother was still living and cognitively intact when I was born! My poor great-great grandfather unfortunately only lived to be 98! Definitely hope those genes are dominant for me!  Anyway, try to brainstorm as a family as to what this relative did to achieve such healthy aging and longevity.  Don’t be surprised to discover that these people probably have something in common. They were active and always moving and ate healthy foods-fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, herbs and spices,  and lots of  tea.  They didn’t consume fast food, processed foods,  soda, or junk! Strive for that  kind of senior aging, health, and fitness!  Why not take advantage of every possibility to lessen your chances of developing a memory loss or suffering a cognitive decline? Remember, memory loss does not have to be a part of the normal aging process! Take charge of your health and your life!

Be the master of your  health! Engage your brain with challenging brain fitness activities. Build your cognitive reserve through some mentally stimulating activities. Learn a new game,  learn a new language, participate in a social group, and EXERCISE!  Try our Brain Boosters! One of the secrets to longevity is to achieve a healthy balance between a healthy mind, body, and spirit!

Happy New Year, and make 2011 the year YOU commit to your health!

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