What's Good for the Body is Good for the Brain -- September is Healthy Aging® Month

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Recognized as a national wellness campaign, Healthy Aging® Month is designed to put a spotlight on the longevity of our citizens and how they can successfully age; avoiding declines in physical, mental and emotional health.

It's vital that we teach people how to keep their bodies and minds working at their full capacity.

September is Healthy Aging® Month, a national observance focusing attention on the positive aspects of growing older. Recognized as a national wellness campaign, Healthy Aging® Month is designed to put a spotlight on the longevity of our citizens and how they can successfully age; avoiding declines in physical, mental and emotional health.

"Since our population is living longer, people are developing higher expectations for a better quality of life in their senior years," says Dr. Lorne S. Label, board-certified neurologist and director of the Brain Longevity Center (http://www.brainlc.com) in Thousand Oaks, California. "It's vital that we teach people how to keep their bodies and minds working at their full capacity."

A healthy aging program includes exercise, good nutrition, stress reduction, sufficient sleep, and avoiding obvious health hazards such as smoking.

"The medical community once thought that while the body benefited from good health choices, very little could be done to help regenerate the brain. We now know that the brain is very resilient and it is possible to keep the brain sharp and agile as one grows older," says Dr. Label.

In fact, recent cognitive research has shown that the brain can continue to renew cells throughout a person's lifetime. It doesn't matter if you are nine or ninety. You can still learn -- it may just take a little longer. New medical evidence also shows that a planned, individualized program can help slow the progression of cognitive decline and thereby increase the quality of life.

What steps can you take to optimize your brain function? First, most things that are good for the body are good for the brain. It's also important to be socially active, maintain a positive attitude, look for the humor in life and keep learning.

Learning is the real key to maintaining good cognitive function. This means tackling new tasks and hobbies, such as taking a dance class, mastering a musical instrument, traveling to new places, trying your hand at art projects, learning a computer program or even studying a new language.

Like your body, your brain needs to be exercised frequently. Brain games and activities, sometimes called "neurobics," will engage the brain's memory, reasoning, visual spatial and information processing. These brain games should be fun and interesting, and they must be progressively more challenging -- so you have the best cognitive workout.

The bottom line is that taking charge of your wellbeing is the key to successful aging. Healthy Aging® Month can be a catalyst for those who have been putting off making the necessary lifestyle changes.

"It's never too late to improve your health. If you haven't had a recent medical check-up, then schedule a physical exam. The results will show the current status of your health and reveal any underlying medical concerns. This will give you a basis for creating a proactive program that you can integrate into your life. If you take these steps, you will have a healthier body and mind to enjoy your senior years to the fullest," says Dr. Label.

The Brain Longevity Center was founded by Dr. Lorne S. Label in 2007. Offering traditional and integrative medical care, the Center evaluates and treats patients with memory impairment. The Center is located at 2100 Lynn Road, Suite 230, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360. For more information, visit our website at http://www.brainlc.com or call 805-497-7274.

Healthy Aging® Month http://www.healthyaging.net/index.htm is developed, produced and marketed by the nonprofit Educational Television Network, Inc. An annual observance, the campaign is designed to focus national attention on the positive aspects of growing older.

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Nancy Wurtzel
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