If you’ve been wondering just how to maintain a healthy brain for yourself, or for an older relative, then I have some very good news.
In April, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published a comprehensive report on this very topic. It’s called “Cognitive Aging: Progress in Understanding and Opportunities for Action.”
This report manages to be innovative, comprehensive, and also incredibly useful to regular people and practicing doctors. That’s because the IOM created a number of practical guides and resource sheets, to accompany their detailed and exhaustively researched 385 page report.
To help get the word out about the highlights of this report, I’ve written an article about it for NextAvenue.org:
In this NextAvenue article, I review:
- The definition of cognitive aging, and why everyone should expect it,
- 4 commonly believed myths about cognitive aging,
- 6 actions the IOM recommends people take to protect cognitive health as they age,
- Why the IOM is telling doctors to pay special attention to preventing delirium, and identifying risky medications,
- The IOM’s conclusions regarding diet and brain health,
- What you should know if you or your relative has been diagnosed with a dementia such as Alzheimer’s.
Since we’re all part of an aging society, it’s good for all of us to learn more about how the brain tends to change with age, and how we can optimize brain health as people get older.
As the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences, the IOM’s job is to provide “independent, objective, evidence-based advice to policy makers, health professionals, the private sector, and the public.”
When an IOM committee makes recommendations on a given health topic, you can rest assured that this represents the best available medical knowledge.
So before you read yet another article about “brain-boosting foods,” take a look at the NextAvenue article summarizing the highlights of the IOM report.
And then let me know which of the report highlights were most interesting to you.