One of Australia's largest private health insurance providers has helped dementia prevention enter the digital age.
The Bupa Health Foundation – in association with Alzheimer's Australia – has developed the BrainyApp as a way to highlight the importance on a healthy heart and mind in reducing the chance of Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia later in life.
The application – available on Apple products – can assist users monitor and improve the physical, mental, dietary and social aspects of their lifestyle.
"The number of Australians with dementia is expected to dramatically increase by 2020," claimed chair of the Bupa Health Foundation Steering Committee Dr Christine Bennett.
"As well as lifestyle choices, proper management of cardiovascular risk factors like high blood pressure and high cholesterol are also important for brain health", she said.
Those with private health insurance may be able to access lifestyle management programs such as weight loss to help keep such cardiovascular risk factors low.
National president of Alzheimer's Australia Ita Buttrose has heralded the world-first development.
"Most people are aware of what they can do to reduce their risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke but what isn't well known is that these same lifestyle choices may also lower the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease and other kinds of dementia," Ms Buttrose said.