What can I do?

I was very lucky to participate in a research study that allowed me to have some genetic markers evaluated for my response to drugs and likelihood of developing certain diseases. If it weren’t for this study I wouldn’t have been able to afford this testing. Which is odd when I really think about it because the amount of money one could save in healthcare costs with this information could be staggering.

The good news is that I have very little risk of macular degeneration, Celiac disease, or Lupus, and some other things I have never heard of and am glad I don’t need to worry about.

Then there is the not so good news. I have a pretty high likelihood of heart attack, Alzheimer’s disease, and osteoarthritis. yay!

(But, G!!, aren’t you afraid of writing that because you might be discriminated against… no, I am not, because there is a law that protects me against that:

So what can I do? The company that did my testing had some suggestions. Some they consider “proven” some they consider “preliminary” because there isn’t enough data yet.

So, obviously “proven” is LOSE WEIGHT – even losing a little bit will help. Yes, I know that one. I KNOW! That is a clinically proven way to significantly reduce my chances of developing all three. But there were some more fun things in there that I am also going to pursue…. some are clinically proven, some are “preliminary” and I was pleasantly surprised that I hadn’t heard of some of them before. And they are all things I wouldn’t mind doing anyway, so no harm no foul if they actually don’t make a difference.

Walk A LOT, but don’t run. I have to give up the dream of running. For thin people with joint bounceatude, this is a good option. But I am heavy and lumbering and that much high-impact could really speed up the onslaught of arthritis. But walking helps on all levels – delaying osteoarthritis, reducing stress, aiding weight loss, and on and on and on…

Drink wine? I dunno. This was filed under promising for women to prevent dementia and for everybody for heart disease – one glass of red at night – sounds fine, but I am not a fan of dry reds. And a sugary drink, even wine, is contraindicated for me, I’m sure.

Get a flu shot! I got a flu shot last year and I LOVED not getting sick. Never, ever going to miss getting the shot and the “flu can worsen symptoms of coronary artery disease.”

Get plenty of vitamin D, B12, folic acid, and omega-3s. I am not going to start eating fish like it recommends everywhere on the site (with always the mercury disclaimer).. but I can take a flaxseed oil supplement, and I am going to take my supplements unfailingly.

Use olive oil, never canola oil. Olive oil is indicated to help prevent Alzheimer’s. Canola oil introduces LAs into the body which compete with ALAs which are the good things from flaxseed oil (see the one above). So canola oil is cheaper than olive oil but olive oil is cheaper than flaxseed oil or supplements. OY! After writing that all I need to remember is use olive oil, not canola oil.

Curry, baby! There is a hypothesis that curcumin (or turmeric) in curry is the reason that populations who eat a lot of curry have very low occurrences of Alzheimer’s. “Curcumin seems to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and inhibits the formation of amyloids, which make up the brain plaques characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease.” WOW. Curry – I can do that.

Do some puzzles. So the way to prevent Alzheimer’s is to keep the brain active by doing tasks that require processing a lot of information. Hello, welcome to my 10-hour work day. But doing some brain work that is also relaxing seems like it can be nothing but goodness. And I love puzzles.

Don’t wear high heels. This can speed up the onset of osteoarthritis if one is prone to it. Yup, no problem… no high heels.
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