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Brain Boosters-April Anagrams


green tea ice cream

Image via Wikipedia

Well, it’s that time again! Time to exercise your brain, form new brain pathways, build your cognitive reserve, challenge yourself,  engage in new learning!  Become a lifelong learner, and take advantage of your brain or neuroplasticity skills through new learning.  We are never too old for new learning or too young to begin building our cognitive reserves!  Let’s try some anagrams today with an April theme. Create as many new words as you can from the following words.

Go grab a healthy snack-fruit, nuts, veggie sticks, dark chocolate, paired with a healthy beverage-green tea, water, red wine. I just had some walnuts and iced green tea. Ready? Here are your words.

STORMING

HAILING

BUTTERFLIES

FERTILE

NESTING

BLOOMED

BEAUTY

MAGNOLIA

FERTILIZER

GARDENING

Remember to exercise your body as well! Physical exercise helps pump blood throughout your body-including your brain. Studies have shown that by walking just 35 minutes a day at least 3 days/week it’s possible to increase the size of your hippocampus, which relates to your memory skills! So, get up, leash that dog and take a walk!

Brain Boosters-Word Wizards


Cup of green tea

Image via Wikipedia

It’s that time again-time to exercise your brain. Today let’s try some Word Wizards. These are so fun and designed to address problem solving, thought flexibility, reasoning,  and executive function skills. Word Wizards are great brain exercises for all ages from kids to seniors. Remember, we are never too old for new learning and never too young to begin building our cognitive reserves, thanks to brain/neuroplasticity! The key to forming new pathways is to try and engage in new learning and mix things up. Do things differently so you actually force yourself to think and not go into auto mode.  So, get your healthy brain food and drink-nuts, berries, eggs filled with colorful vegetables, green tea, and water and let’s begin our workout.

Directions for completing Word Wizards:

Change only 1 letter at a time until you have changed the first word to the last word. We have solutions but there can certainly be multiple solutions. Please share your answers and let’s see who can use the fewest words to solve these!

SEND

– – – –

– – – –

– – – –

TAKE

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

 

SNAP

– – – –

– – – –

– – – –

– – – –

ALOT

Brain Awareness Week


Today officially kicks off  Brain Awareness Week (BAW), and BrainMasters is proud to be one of The Dana Foundation‘s partners. Be sure and check our BAW Calendar of Events, and join our brain celebration activities to be held during the next 2 weeks.

Here are some facts about BAW.

  • March 14-20, 2011 is BAW’s sixteenth annual celebration.
  • The goal of the campaign is to make the public more aware of the benefits and promise of brain research.
  • BAW is a global partnership of government agencies, scientific organizations, universities, hospitals, service groups, professional associations, schools, and other organizations. Since its inception in 1996, more than 2,600 partners in 82 countries have participated in the campaign.
  • Hundreds of BAW events take place each year. These activities are organized by partners to meet one or more of the following goals: scientific, education, or advocacy outreach.

Here are a couple of quick facts about your brain. Did you know that your brain accounts for ~ 2% of your total body weight and weighs ~ 3 pounds? The brain is one of the body’s largest organs. Interesting, isn’t it?

Now that you have learned a couple of things and fired those neurons, let’s give them a workout and stay sharp!

Unscramble the following words.

STLMTEEAP

ZDAIRW

EINDDEGS

TCEVRIEA

UOMCNL

TPSJOREC

Share your answers with us! Need help with these-just ask us! Enjoy exercising your brain today!

Senior Growth Tsunami


Have you heard about the upcoming tsunami of senior growth projected in the next decade? This is what researchers from the Urban Institute are calling the mass influx of retiring baby boomers. The Urban Institute has identified the 20 U.S. cities where most of the baby boomers are expected to retire and where senior housing and care will grow as well.

The Urban Institute has predicted that the senior population of Georgia will increase by 40% between 2010 and 2020 just from the aging in place of the baby boomers alone. Georgia is expecting an additional 4% growth from migration of people 65 and older. That’s a significant number!

Are you able to name the 20 metro areas that will experience the most growth as a result from retiring baby boomers? In case you’re not able, here is the list.

1. Raleigh-Cary, NC (31.6%)

2. Austin-Round Rock, TX (30.1%)

3. Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA (29.8%)

4. Boise City-Nampa, ID (28.7%)

5. Las Vegas-Paradise, NV (27.8%)

6. Orlando-Kissimmee, FL (27.2%)

7. Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX (23.7%)

8. Dallas-Ft. Worth-Arlington, TX (22.7%)

9.  Colorado Springs, CO (22.6%)

10. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX (21.5%)

11.  Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ (21.0%)

12. Charleston-North Charleston, SC (20.8%)

13. Albuquerque, NM (19.5%)

14. Tuscon, AZ (19.2%)

15. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC/VA (19.1%)

16. Salt Lake City, UT (19.0%)

17. Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, NC (18.2%)

18. Denver-Aurora, CO (18.1%)

19. Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin, TN (18.1%)

20. Ogden-Clearfield, UT (18.0%)

What will you do to prepare? How do you fit into the senior growth tsunami? Many of these up and coming seniors will need services to help them successfully age and retain their independence.

At BrainMasters, we are preparing to do our part! We are committed to educating the public by increasing awareness of  brain health, brain fitness, and brain maintenance as part of a healthy lifestyle to achieve longevity and maintain independence. We a proud to be in partnership with The Dana Foundation to promote Brain Awareness Week, March 14-20, 2011.  Be sure and join us for events scheduled throughout  the month of March around the Atlanta area!

Contact us to schedule your brain education series and start building your cognitive reserve. We  want to help you improve  your brain health!

 

BrainMasters and Brain Awareness Week


Brain Awareness Week 2011 is almost here-March 14-20, 2011.  BrainMasters is proud to be a partner with  The Dana Foundation in support of BAW.  What are you doing that week? Here is a sample of one of our scheduled events around Atlanta.

BrainMasters will have an exhibit and open house at Savannah Court Assisted Living,  Marietta, Georgia. During this time, Heidi Lipman, M.Ed.,CCC-SLP and Wendy Alexander, M.Ed.,CCC-SLP the co-founders and owners of BrainMasters will conduct an educational and hands on interactive workshop focusing on brain health, brain fitness, and brain maintenance. Our event is primarily targeted for adults with a concentration on assisted living residents, family members, friends, caregivers, staff, and professionals in the area. The event is of course open to the public, and all are invited to join us.

With more and more attention focusing on anti-aging, healthy living, and aging in place it is more important than ever to learn about the brain and brain health. This is especially true as our population continues to age and Alzheimer’s Disease is on the rise with someone currently developing it every 70 seconds and by the year 2050 it will be every 33 seconds. These statistics are  frightening to say the least!  So, make it a goal to increase your knowledge of the brain, exercise your brain, exercise your body, eat a healthy diet, and be positive! These all contribute to healthy aging and longevity. Isn’t that what we all want?

 

Alzheimer’s Disease-How Much Do You Really Know?


Logo of Alzheimer's Society.

Image via Wikipedia

What do think of when you  hear the dreaded words-Alzheimer’s Disease? What kind of visual image comes to mind? Do you think of someone in your family, or perhaps a family friend? I am sure we all know someone who has been affected by this disease. Alzheimer’s Disease does not discriminate and can even affect people under the age of 35.

I have finished reviewing the 2010 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures and would like to highlight some information for you to consider. Some of these statistics are mind boggling, disturbing, and just shocking. Honestly, even I was quite surprised by some of this information.

Let’s begin with this. In the United States:

5.3 million people have Alzheimer’s

it’s the 7th leading cause of death

annual costs are 172 BILLION DOLLARS

10.9 million unpaid caregivers

Read those again as these are truly sobering statistics!

Did you know that 1 in 8 people aged 65 and older have Alzheimer’s? Currently, every 70 seconds someone in the US develops Alzheimer’s, and by 2050 it will be every 33 seconds.

Now, let’s look at some information about the caregivers. There are basically paid and unpaid caregivers, sandwich generation caregivers. If you’re not familiar with the term sandwich generation, it’s those people or families who are caring for a parent or parents while still caring for children living at home. Many of these sandwich generation caregivers continue to hold down jobs as well. Can you imagine how difficult and stressful this is?  Caregiving activities may include shopping, medication management, meal preparation, dressing, bathing, grooming, toileting, managing finances, and the list continues. Some of these caregivers are responsible for performing almost all the activities of daily living (ADLs) for these Alzheimer’s patients. Just imagine how this affects the caregivers.

In 2009, the estimated economic value of the care provided by the family and other unpaid caregivers was $144 billion. This translates to 12.5 billion hours of care valued at a rate of $11.50 per hour. For 2009 the U.S. totals were staggering!  The number of Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers was 10,987,887. There were 12,513,005,548 hours of unpaid care valued at $143,899,563,806!

There is nothing kind about Alzheimer’s Disease. It affects the entire family and can create tremendous amounts of stress and hardship. It’s crucial for the caregivers, spouses, children, and others close to the person with Alzheimer’s  reach out to others, join support groups, seek counseling, get help, find an outlet for your own stress. Remember, you are not alone! Take advantages of the many available resources! We should all continue to learn as much as we can about this disease and support research efforts.

A recent study reported that walking 6-9 miles per week will decrease the risk for Alzheimer’s. Again, the importance of exercise and diet only helps us achieve our ultimate goal of maintaining a long, healthy life while aging in place! So, get busy-exercise your body, fuel it properly, and exercise your brain! What do you have to lose?

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