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(Posted 7:30 a.m., April 24)
Portobello retirement
community expands
Fit Minds program

By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Fit Minds trainer Mary Murphy leads residents at the Portobello Manor retirement community through a warm up exercise before the begin the program. Fred Sherwin/Photo

It's been a long held belief that the more active you are, the more healthy you will be and the better chance you will have of living a long and productive life.

But staying physically active is only part of the secret to longevity. Keeping your mind active is equally as important, if not more so.

Scienctists have proven that people who exercise their brains have a better chance of preventing brain disease such as dimentia and Alzheimers than people who do not.

A healthy brain requires proper nutrition; an active lifestyle; socialization; and mental stimulation. Together these factors develop your brain's cognitive resilience and reduce your risk of dementia and Alzheimers by as much as 46 per cent.

More recent studies have shown that it is never too late to exercise your brain, which is why more and more retirement communities are introducing cognitive training programs based on neuroplascity, which is the ability for the brain to continue to develop throughout one's life.

Portobello Manor in Fallingbrook is one such community. They introduced the Fit Minds program for residents living with dementia and Alzheimers disease some time ago. They are now extending the program to all their residents.

Close to 50 residents were introduced to the program on Tuesday. They went through a number of exercises that encouraged them to socialize with other residents about events that took place in their lives; they tackled several word puzzles and they thought their way through several visual spatial exercises.

All the exercises encouraged the residents to use their brain. Future sessions will be limited to five or six people, but their will be more of them.

Portobello marketing manager Marise Bellavance says the residence is constantaly exploring methods and programs to enhance the health and well-being of its residents. The Fit Minds program is just another one of those programs.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

 

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