Brain health specialists share the habits to avoid to best care for your mind.

More than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s and dementia, making it the seventh leading cause of death globally.

While myriad factors, including genetics and environment, can cause dementia, it can also present as a result of certain lifestyle choices and general health. Some involve making big changes, but consistent, more minor shifts can be helpful, too, according to Jessica Caldwell, director of the Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement Prevention Center at Cleveland Clinic.

“Small changes over time can add up to major benefits for your brain as you age,” she said. “It’s never too late to start a healthy habit — even people who have mild cognitive changes or dementia can benefit from brain healthy habits.”

But what about the things you should never do? Below, neurologists and doctors share the habits they avoid, and recommend avoiding, to maintain optimal brain health.

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