Kirk Douglas Turns 99…and Larry King Turns Producer

Larry King Unwraps a Seasonal Comedy Talkmeister Larry King has appeared in more than 60 movies, but he had never produced one until this year. His ensemble holiday comedy, Christmas Eve, is now in theaters and on iTunes. The large cast includes Patrick Stewart, Cheryl Hines, Gary Cole and Shawn Southwick — that fourth name being King’s wife, who showed him the script after she’d been cast in the movie. “I loved the script,” King told me yesterday. “It’s about people …

Slow Walking May Be a Sign of Early Alzheimer’s

Good news for speed walkers. Many studies have shown that walking and other exercise helps protect the brain as we age. Now a new study finds that slow walking speed may be a sign of early Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers in France studied 128 people in their 70s who did not have dementia but were considered high risk because they had concerns about their memories. The participants had scans to measure amyloid plaques in their brains. (The buildup of these plaques …

Study: Hearing Aids May Help Protect Brain Health

For several years, studies have linked hearing loss and dementia, but no major study has addressed the big question: Could using hearing aids reduce the risk of cognitive decline? Now an important new French study finds that older adults who use hearing aids experience the same rate of cognitive decline as their peers with normal hearing. In other words, while hearing loss is associated with accelerated cognitive decline, hearing aids can slow that from happening, researchers say. The study, published …

These Simple Exercises Could Help Preserve Brain Health

Want a cheap and easy way to improve your brain health? Try lifting weights a couple times a week. A new study adds to evidence that light strength training — also called resistance training — may be key to maintaining a healthy brain. Because of the way strength training pumps blood to the brain, some researchers now think it goes beyond the benefits of aerobic exercise and helps preserve brain health as we age. Teresa Liu-Ambrose and her colleagues at the University of British …

My Top Tips for Caregivers, as Seen on ‘Today’ Show

Recently, I appeared on the Today show with Kathie Lee and Hoda to share some of my best tips for caregivers. The segments go by in a flash, so I thought I’d share a bit more about each of the tips I discussed on the show (see the video below). If you suddenly find yourself in the position of caregiver for a parent, spouse/partner, grandparent, sibling, adult child, friend or neighbor, here are some things to do immediately: If a loved one is unexpectedly hospitalized, …

These Foods Linked to Bigger Brains, Better Memory

With the recent news tying processed and red meats to cancer, you may already be cutting back on steak dinners. Here’s even more incentive: Two new studies have found that a Mediterranean-style diet — featuring more fish, whole grains, fruits and vegetables and less meat — may not only help keep your memory strong but also slow age-related brain shrinkage. There’s also good news for those who find it difficult to eat healthy all the time: Both studies found that …