UMN Expert: Impacting Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias with exercise

Fang Yu

In the United States, Alzheimer’s disease affects more than 5.7 million people. This number is continuing to grow, expecting to reach 14 million by 2050. While there are approved drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease symptoms, none prevent or slow the progression of the disease.

University of Minnesota expert Professor Fang Yu has been exploring non-pharmacological treatments that hold promise for slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. She is available for comment on how physical exercise can help those with cognitive impairment to live longer with a better quality of life:

Fang Yu
“Seeing that physical exercise and cognitive training were so promising, I wondered if combining them would have a synergistic effect in slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, leading to results even better than doing just one or the other.

“There is so much promise in nonpharmacological treatments, like exercise and cognitive training. Ultimately, I want people with cognitive impairment to live longer in the community, with a better quality of life.”

Professor Fang Yu, PhD, RN, GNP-BC, FGSA, FAAN, is a national and internationally-renowned expert in aerobic exercise interventions in Alzheimer’s disease. She holds the Long-Term Care Professorship at the School of Nursing and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and the Gerontological Society of America.

A past editor of Nursing and Health Sciences, she is an editorial board member of several journals including the Journal of Gerontological Nursing. Yu served on the board of the Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging and co-chaired a committee of the Minnesota Alzheimer’s Disease Work Group.

Fang Yu
612-624-5435 (o)


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