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HomeLifestyleLauren Miller Rogen and husband Seth Rogen are prioritizing their own brain...

Lauren Miller Rogen and husband Seth Rogen are prioritizing their own brain health after her mom’s early-onset Alzheimer’s diagnosis. Here’s how.

For filmmaker Lauren Miller Rogen, a good night’s rest is nonnegotiable — even if her husband, actor Seth Rogen, has some thoughts about all the work it takes to get there. “Seth always jokes that I have 10,000 things to do to sleep,” Lauren, who tracks her sleep and activity with an Oura Ring, says in the couple’s joint phone interview with Yahoo Life. “I have a cooling pad, a weighted blanket, a sleep mask, a white noise machine … I have a bedtime and a wind-down routine. My sleep actually did improve.”

Lauren’s focus on getting proper shut-eye isn’t just about feeling well rested. After her mother, Adele, was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s at age 54, Lauren and Seth decided to educate others on how to improve their brain health and found sleep to be one of the main pillars. Now, their organization, Hilarity for Charity (HFC), provides caregiving tools for those in need, in addition to promoting brain research and teaching people how to reduce their own Alzheimer’s risk.

In addition to sleep, focusing on cognitive health, emotional well-being, physical fitness and nutrition is vital for keeping brains healthy. When it comes to the kinds of food they eat, the couple strive for balance: They eat what they call an “intuitive” Mediterranean-esque diet, which includes dishes such as fish made on the barbecue and Broccolini with roasted chicken. (As with quality sleep, research shows a Mediterranean diet is linked to fewer signs of Alzheimer’s disease in the brain.)

Lauren says she never wants to feel like she’s depriving herself, however: “Salads and vegetables … may not sound like the most fun thing, but it’s important to do,” she notes. “And then, once or twice a week, you have a cookie.”

Long days on set, of course, can sometimes derail even the best-laid plans. Seth says his focus is now on how food makes him feel, which helps him make healthier choices — most of the time, at least. “As I get older, what I’m fighting most is fatigue and a lack of energy in my work,” the Pineapple Express and Knocked Up star says. “I just know if I eat too much garbage, I’ll have less energy than if I eat better food. But at the end of the day, if we’re working late, yeah, I’ll shove a whole Philly cheesesteak in my mouth, walking from the set to my car.”

Just as important as caring for their physical health (which also includes workouts like Orangetheory and weight lifting) is caring for their mental and emotional health — something that Lauren tackled head-on after her mother was diagnosed. Lauren joined a support group with other people who, at the time, were under the age of 35 and had a parent suffering from dementia. (Lauren’s mother died at age 68.) “I felt like I was in a community of people who really saw me and could understand what I was going through, and that was really helpful,” she says. (HFC recently launched a caregiver guide for people taking care of their loved ones.)

Seth also encouraged Lauren to try therapy, telling her, “‘I love you, but I don’t know how to help you. I don’t know what other tools to give you,’” she recalls. “My therapist has really been there to help me find perspective, and help me rationalize the good and the bad, and understand that while this horrible thing was happening to my mother, I still needed to live my own life alongside that,” she explains. “And now, they continue to do that with any of the other things I continue to face as a human being.”

While self-care — and reducing Alzheimer’s risk — may seem like work, Seth and Lauren agree that it can also be fun: They recently launched HFCUniversity, which includes brain-friendly classes taught by celebrity faculty including Kristen Bell and Quinta Brunson. In their spare time, they get together with friends to make pottery in their personal studio, and Seth combines this with his passion for weed by creating smoke-friendly pottery for the brand Houseplant.

“With pottery, we’re keeping our brains active, and we’re constantly learning new things doing that — that’s really important for brain health,” says Lauren.

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