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Check your dementia risk with this simple test

If you’re in your 80s, 90s, or beyond, congratulations!

You’ve beaten the odds and lived well past the average age. As far as I’m concerned, you’ve earned the right to tell anyone offering you advice — including me — to stuff it.

Obviously, you’re doing something right!

There’s not much you fear at this point. Not heart disease… not cancer… not even a traffic accident. When your time comes, it comes.

But there IS one thing many “super-seniors” DO fear — and that’s the slow self-destruction of Alzheimer’s disease.

If you’re one of them… if you’ve lived eight or nine decades and are planning for more… here’s your chance to spot the key warning signs so you can fight back NOW and never let the disease rob you of your golden years.

It comes down to some little tests — and ones that DON’T involve needles, radiation, loud noises, or being strapped to a table and slid into a long metal tube.

All you need to do is ask a doctor to check your handgrip strength, balance, and ability to walk four meters (a little less than 15 feet).

Odds are, you don’t have the iron grip you used to… you’re not going to pull off any wild yoga moves… and you’re certainly not about to compete in the 100-meter dash.

But if you’ve slowed down more than most — if your “speed” is more of a “crawl,” your balance is nonexistent, and you’ve got zip in your grip — then you’re facing a higher risk of dementia over the next two and a half years, according to the study.

Now, it’s one thing to know your risk.

It’s quite another to do something about it — and if you ask your doc, he’ll claim there’s not much you can do except cross your fingers and wait.

But you’ve outlived enough doctors to know how wrong he is.

And if you’re planning to outlive him, too, I’m here to help — because there are steps you can take at any age to protect your brain and slow the onset of this disease, making sure you can love every minute of the years you have left.

First, boost your intake of heart-friendly, brain-boosting omega-3 fatty acids. A 2013 study found these healthy fats found in fish oil can cut your risk of dementia and even extend your life.

And second, make sure you’re getting plenty of the B vitamins proven to help protect against the “brain shrink” that marks dementia and slow or even reverse cognitive decline.

Of course, talk to your doc before adding supplements, especially if you’re already on meds so he can make sure they don’t cause any conflicts.

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