I officially turn 65 at the end of this February. Doc Brown and Marty McFly's time machine sure would come in handy right about now. What are you supposed to "feel like" when you reach senior citizen status? According to the News-Times, a new study out of Yale University tells us that negative thoughts and beliefs about becoming a geezer could make you more at risk for dementia.

A replica of the Delorean in "Back to the Future" - Credit Rachel Murray/Getty Images

The good news here is that finding ways to combat the feelings of impending doom as one gets older can reduce the rapidly rising rate of Alzheimer's Disease.

When I turned 60, all I could think about was how to prepare for "getting old," like "will I have enough money to retire so I won't have to buy cat food for dinner?" When should I begin taking social security? Do Mindy and I have enough life insurance? It all came crashing down on me. The I realized that age is just a state of mind.

The Yale University studies were based on MRI's of individuals who held more negative beliefs about growing older. They showed a greater decline in the section of the brain called the hippocampus that's crucial to memory, which is a sign of Alzheimer's Disease.

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According to the Mayo Clinic's ongoing Study of Aging, those who took part in artistic, craft, and social activities during mid-life and late-life had significantly lower risk of developing mild cognitive impairment. What's more, those who reported regular computer use late in life showed a 53% lower mild cognitive impairment risk than those who did not.

 

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