The Alzheimer’s Association, Eastern North Carolina Chapter and the Alzheimer’s Association, Western Carolina Chapter are hosting the Healthy Brain, Healthy Body, Healthy You Symposium, a seven-part virtual education series in June as part of Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month.
For centuries, we’ve known that the health of the brain and the body are connected. But now, science is able to provide insights into how to make lifestyle choices that may help keep our brain and body healthy as we age. During Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month, join the Association to learn about research in the areas of diet and nutrition, exercise, cognitive activity and social engagement. Participants will learn strategies and activities to incorporate into their plans for healthy aging.
Part one — “Healthy Living for Your Brain and Body Overview” — will take place on Monday, June 7from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. Learn about research in the areas of diet and nutrition, exercise, cognitive activity and social engagement, and use hands-on tools to help you incorporate these recommendations into a plan for healthy aging. Cheryl Greenberg, Ed.D., The Age Coach, will be presenting.
Part two — “Mindfulness Matters” — will take place Tuesday, June 8 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.Mindfulness practices help individuals slow down their racing thoughts, calm their body and mind, and live more mindfully in the present. There is a growing body of research on how mindfulness can help prevent cognitive decline, increase cerebral blood flow, and prevent volume loss in brain mass. Participants will be led in a brief mindfulness exercise and will receive resources to continue mindfulness practices on their own. Alyssa Szymanski Botte, MA, MDiv, LCMHC, psychotherapist at New Day Counseling, will be presenting.
Part three — “Med Instead of Meds: Eating the Mediterranean Way for Better Health” — will take place Wednesday, June 9 from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. A research analysis of more than 1.5 million healthy adults demonstrated that following a Mediterranean diet could reduce the risk of death from heart disease and cancer, and may also reduce the incidence of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. In this program, participants will learn the seven steps to help them go Med. Carolyn Dunn, PhD, RDN, LDN, William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor and Head of the Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences NC State University, will be presenting.
Part four — “Gentle Yoga (seated)” — will take place on Wednesday, June 9 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Yoga is a mind and body practice that involves movement, meditation, and breathing techniques to promote mental and physical well-being. All of us may benefit from adopting a practice like yoga for our overall health. Individuals living with a dementia diagnosis and their care partners may benefit from sharing this experience and incorporating this practice into their daily routines. This gentle yoga session will focus on practicing from a seated position such as a chair. Kathy Alvarez, registered yoga instructor and founder of Steel Power Yoga, will be presenting.
Part five — “Engaging with Art” — will take place on Thursday, June 10 from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.Participants will experience easy, fun and creative hands-on art activities that are partnered with visualizations, meditation, Qigong movements and breathing exercises. This program is designed for families, caregivers and people with cognitive changes. Participants will learn activities that can be incorporated into engagement for care partners and loved ones to enjoy together. Eileen A. Schwartz, BFA, MAE, Founder/Art Facilitator of Healing Arts for Caregivers, will be presenting.
Part six — “Mediterranean Cooking Demo” — will take place on Thursday, June 10 from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. While the benefits of a Mediterranean diet are fairly well known, how and what to cook sometimes can be harder to learn. In this cooking demonstration, participants will learn how to prepare a simple stir fry. Participants may observe or join from their own kitchen and cook along. A recipe and shopping list, along with instructions on what to have prepared in advance, will be provided. Geri Bushel, Executive Assistant with the Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences at NC State University, will be presenting.
Part seven — “Gentle Yoga (mat)” — will take place on Friday, June 11 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Yoga is a mind and body practice that involves movement, meditation, and breathing techniques to promote mental and physical well-being. All of us may benefit from adopting a practice like yoga for our overall health. Individuals living with a dementia diagnosis and their care partners may benefit from sharing this experience and incorporating this practice into their daily routines. This gentle yoga session will focus on practicing from the mat, which means moving between standing and lying positions. Kathy Alvarez, registered yoga instructor and founder of Steel Power Yoga, will be presenting.
Anyone interested in learning more tips for healthy aging are welcome to attend. Registrants may attend all sessions or just those that fit best their schedule and interests. Attendees can attend via video/webinar or through a toll-free number. There is no charge to participate, but registration is required. To sign up, visit tinyurl.com/HealthyLivingSymposium or call 1-800-272-3900.
“Healthy habits may help to keep our brains healthy as we age and possibly delay the onset of cognitive decline,” said Lisa Roberts, Executive Director of the Eastern North Carolina Chapter. “Programs like the Healthy Brain, Healthy Body, Healthy You Symposium show that at any age, there are lifestyle habits we can adopt to help maintain or even potentially improve our health.”
Additional Facts and Figures:(http://www.alz.org/facts/)
- Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States.
- More than five millionAmericans are living with the disease, including 180,000 North Carolina residents — a number estimated to grow to as many as 210,000 by year 2025.
- More than 11 million familyand friends, including 358,000 in North Carolina, provide unpaid care to people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias in the United States.
- In 2020, friends and family of those withAlzheimer’s in North Carolina provided an estimated 517 million hours of unpaid care, a contribution valued at $7.3 billion.
About the Alzheimer’s Association:
“The Alzheimer’s Association is a worldwide voluntary health organization dedicated to Alzheimer’s care, support and research. Our mission is to lead the way to end Alzheimer’s and all other dementia — by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s and all other dementia.”
About the Alzheimer’s Association – Eastern North Carolina Chapter:
The Eastern North Carolina Chapter provides patient and family services, information and referral, education, and advocacy in 51 eastern North Carolina counties. It offers opportunities to get involved and to make a difference, in addition to a variety of services including: a 24/7 Helpline, support groups, educational programs, and MedicAlert®. For more information about Alzheimer’s disease, or the Alzheimer’s Association, Eastern North Carolina Chapter, visitalz.org/nc or call 800-272-3900. For the latest news and updates, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.