Health Services
Join the Healthy Minds Initiative

Beach Cities Health District (BCHD) has finalized a three-year partnership with award-winning neurologists Drs. Dean and Ayesha Sherzai for the “Healthy Minds Initiative,” a study that will look at 500 Beach Cities older adults and the effects active and passive lifestyle changes have on cognitive and psychological health. In other words, how factors such as a proper diet and lifestyle can prevent brain disease and promote long-term brain health. The Healthy Minds Initiative is funded annually by the Beach Cities Health District.

How older adults can get involved

This study has transitioned to a completely virtual environment in response to COVID-19. All testing and interventions will be conducted virtually.

Interested in contributing to emergent and innovative research related to dementia and brain health? One of the greatest ways to help move this critical research forward is by participating in the Healthy Minds Initiative. Adults (55+) who currently live in Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach or Redondo Beach are encouraged to sign-up in the link below or by calling BCHD at (310) 374-3426, ext. 256. All participants will be screened virtually by BCHD staff to ensure they meet environmental and health-related requirements for the three-year research study, which is seeking 500 participants in the Beach Cities. If you are interested, please complete the form in the link below to be placed on the wait list. The research team appreciates your patience as the study transitions to a virtual environment. A team member will contact you in no more than 2-4 weeks to begin the screening process.


For more information, call 310-374-3426, ext. 256 (Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.)

Heathy Minds Initiative study homepage - Active participants click HERE to access.

The Sherzai's 5-step Alzheimer’s busting plan
There may still be no cure for Alzheimer’s but, with the right advice, we can be mentally active for longer, reverse the debilitating symptoms of the disease and ultimately add more happy, healthy years to our lives. Here’s how you can start.

  1. We found that eating too much meat is bad for your brain, which requires vegetables, fruit, pulses, grains and healthy fats to thrive.
  2. Physical exercise increases both the number of brain cells and the connections between them. We suggest maintaining an active lifestyle that incorporates movement every hour — not just a quick stop at the gym after an otherwise sedentary day at the office, for example.
  3. Chronic stress puts the brain in a state of high inflammation, causing structural damage and impairing its ability to clear toxins. We recommend meditation, yoga, breathing exercises and time outside.
  4. Restorative sleep is essential for health, so it’s important to aim for seven to eight hours a night.
  5. Puzzles and other complex activities protect your brain against decline. Social support and engagement with your community can also have a clear and undeniable influence on the way in which your brain ages. And activities such as playing music are great for challenging and engaging many of the brain’s capacities.