Management of Stress & Depression to Decrease Risk of Alzheimer & Slow Progression

•Stress and depression associated with elevated risk for AD (Kalyn 2002; Du 2002; Comijs 2001,2004; Foley 2001, Alexopoulos 1993; Wilson 2004,2005; Yaffe 1999;Paterniti 2002).

•Higher plasma cortisol levels were associated with

–more rapidly increasing symptoms of dementia and

–decreasing performance on neuropsychological tests.

(Csernansky,Holtzman & Morris, 2006, Am J Psychiatry).

•Relaxation and stress-management reduces blood pressure and also possibly coronary heart disease risk  (Patel  1987)    and thus reduces AD  risk.


Ways to Decrease Stress & Depression

• Physical exercise

•Massage, acupuncture, tai chi, yoga, dancing, meditation, gardening, fly-fishing….many options

•Herbs such as Holy Basil to reduce cortisol.

•Fish, Fish Oil & Omega-3’s help treat depression and anxiety in people. Essential to a healthy brain. (Andrew L. Stoll “The Omega-3 Connection” 2001; Colin 2003)

•IR & emotional distress are related. Reducing insulin resistance may help reduce depression & anxiety and help prevent AD. (Jarvik 2004).

•Spiritual practices


Complementary Modalities

Many help reduce stress as well as may heal specific conditions.  Some examples:

•Breathing and meditation


•Acupuncture or acupressure

•Tai Chi or Chi Gong

•Foods, herbs and spices from ancient traditions

•Music, art and pets…and therapies using these.

•Becoming artists or art critics


•Massage therapy and many others.



Management of Stress & Depression in persons with AD

•Stress-reduction therapies, such as art therapy, improved function in people with dementia (Kimura, 2002; Rusted, 2002).

–Cognitive function,



–Mental acuity

•Dance movement therapy relieves anxiety in AD. (Emerson Lombardo 1996)

•Acupuncture relieves anxiety in persons with AD and vascular dementia. (Emerson Lombardo 2001)

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