Alzheimer’s Expert Gary Small Underscores Key Healthy Aging Strategies, Many Common to Quality CCRC Environments Like Vi, That May Deter Possible Onset of Dementia

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Many of the specific lifestyle strategies that may delay the possible onset of dementia are common to the environments found at quality continuing care retirement communities, according to Gary Small, M.D., best-selling author, educator and Alzheimer’s expert. Dr. Small recently visited different Vi CCRCs across the country. Vi is a developer, owner and operator of older adult living communities.

Gary Small, M.D.

From what I've seen, quality CCRCs offer the types of environments that can make a difference -- for the resident who makes the choice to take advantage of what's available.

Many of the specific lifestyle strategies that may delay the possible onset of dementia are common to the environments found at quality continuing care retirement communities, according to Gary Small, M.D., best-selling author, educator and Alzheimer’s expert.
    “With many people living longer and a greater percentage of the population susceptible to the disease, how well we age has much to do with lifestyle,” Dr. Small, author of the new book, “The Alzheimer’s Prevention Program.” “And from what I’ve seen, quality Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) offer the types of environments that can make a difference – for the resident who makes the choice to take advantage of what’s available.”
    In a tour promoting his book about Alzheimer’s prevention, Dr. Small recently visited different Vi CCRCs across the country. Vi is a developer, owner and operator of older adult living communities.
“To stave off Alzheimer’s symptoms, we recommend in our book lifestyles that include the following: physical conditioning, such as 30 minutes of daily aerobic exercise; healthy diets with lots of antioxidants; stress reduction techniques such as yoga and meditation; and brain exercises like learning memory techniques and talking to friends instead of watching TV,” Dr. Small said.
In the minds of many of the residents who live in a Vi community, Dr. Small could be describing life at a quality CCRC, according to Bill Sciortino, senior vice president of operations for Vi.
“All the things Dr. Small talks about – physical conditioning, mental stimulation, stress reduction and healthy diets – are part of life at Vi continuing care retirement communities,” Sciortino said.
CCRCs offer independent living with a combination of a private residence, services, amenities and care (for example, assisted living, memory support care and skilled nursing care).
“At Vi, our residents live in comfortable, stylish and maintenance-free homes, have weekly housekeeping services, and have fewer responsibilities like the ones they’d have had if they’d stayed in their previous homes – the chores, errands, ongoing maintenance and costs of upkeep,” Sciortino said. “They’re now living on their own terms with greater independence and less stress.”
He added that Vi residents enjoy dining prepared by chefs who have received customized training provided by the Culinary Institute of America on nutrition, healthy cooking and baking techniques, flavor dynamics, and food and wine pairing.
Also, to embrace wellness, Sciortino said Vi’s strategy, like those espoused by Dr. Small in his book, is an approach to positive living that can lead to improved physical, mental and emotional health. “From fitness classes and on-site services, to social gatherings and cultural outings, we tailor our offerings to the needs and abilities of our residents in each of our communities,” Sciortino said. “Residents can join friends at a tai chi class, join a writers’ workshop or spend the day shopping. At Vi, boredom is not an option.”
Recently, Vi commissioned a report by Ken Dychtwald Ph.D., renowned gerontologist, psychologist, best-selling author, and CEO of Age Wave that challenges the “prevailing myths and misperceptions” about CCRC living. The report, “The Five Myths and Realities of Continuing Care Retirement Communities,” The document is available in its entirety at http://www.ViLiving.com.

About Vi
Vi, formerly Classic Residence by Hyatt, was founded in 1987 as a developer, owner and operator of older adult living communities. The company is dedicated to enriching the lives of older adults by providing quality environments, services and care. Vi currently operates ten continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) and one rental community under a family of brands nationwide. For more information about Vi communities, visit http://www.ViLiving.com.
About Gary Small
Dr. Small is a professor of psychiatry and director of the UCLA Longevity Center at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior. His research, supported by the National Institutes of Health, has made headlines in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and USA Today. Scientific American magazine named him one of the world’s leading innovators in science and technology. He has written six books, including The New York Times best seller, The Memory Bible.

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